Foie Gras: A Closer Look

Posted on by Ashley Fruno


Birds on foie gras farms don’t have the ability to engage in natural behaviors, like flapping their wings, preening themselves, or swimming.

On the heels of California’s landmark ban of foie gras, it’s time to reexamine this cruel culinary debacle.

The production of foie gras is so cruel and horrifying that it has been banned in 16 countries. “Foie gras” is French for “fatty liver.” It is made from the massively and artificially enlarged livers of ducks and geese. The gentle birds who are used to produce foie gras are kept in tiny wire cages and packed into sheds. Two to three times every day, up to 2 kilograms of grain and fat are pumped into the birds’ stomachs by way of a metal pipe that is shoved down their throats. Rupturing of the stomach and other internal organs as well as a plethora of other ailments are common among birds during the production of foie gras.

This force-feeding causes the birds’ livers to become diseased and swell up to 10 times their normal size. The diseased liver is foie gras, and restaurants include it on their menus as a “delicacy.”

Compassionate people around the world are speaking out against this cruelly produced food, and both supermarkets and restaurants are refusing to offer it. We can speak out, too! If you see a restaurant or store in your area serving or selling foie gras, take a stand and tell it to get rid of the cruel dish. For tips on writing letters to businesses, check out PETA U.S.’ letter-writing guide.

Posted by Edwina Baier