Since 2004 California legislation instituted a statewide ban of foie gras beginning in 2012, many restaurants have gradually been removing the French delicacy from their menus. Recently in San Diego, 14 local fine-dining businesses have eliminated the controversial item, some to save themselves the hassle of dealing with angry local activist groups such as the Animal Protection and Rescue League (APRL), and others on moral grounds.
The APRL, which disputes the cruel treatment of force-feeding duck and geese to fatten up their livers for foie gras, takes strong actions against restaurants unwilling to take the item off their menus. Kitchen 1540, at L'Auberge Del Mar, is the most recent establishment to concede this battle to avoid picketers carrying large, tasteless photographs of dead ducks.
Other restaurateurs and chefs are keeping the item on their menus because they believe foie gras can be produced without the inhumane treatment of ducks and geese. The method in question, while still disputed, times the animal slaughtering with winter migration when livers are fattened naturally. The foie gras it yields is criticized as being inferior in taste to the thrice fattened liver of a duck or goose that has been given food by gavage, the process of force-feeding by inserting a tube down into the stomach. Despite this, many make the argument that faux foie gras is better than no foie gras. Could this be a happy middle-ground for all?
To find out more about foie gras from Union-Tribune writer Tannya Mannes, follow this link to the full article:
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