Foie Gras Becomes Illegal in California

June 30, 2012

Today is the final day that anyone in California can produce or sell Foie Gras in the state. 

A law was passed back in 2004 (SB1520), stating that producers had 7 years to stop creating Foie Gras. The practice, known as gavage, requires producers to force feed ducks and geese through funnel like tubes, in order to enlarge their livers to more than 10 times their size. 

This produces the fatty liver we call Foie Gras. July 1 is the cut off date. 

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Alisa Escanlar's picture

I never developed a taste for this but somewhere. I think a gourmet cries over this sad news.

Amy Jeanroy's picture

I thought the most interesting part is that they had 7 Years to implement the law? Why such a long time?
Honestly, I have never had it and it doesn't sound appealing to me, but some people love it.
Thank you for your comments!
Amy J

Edana Brown's picture


Please... "Sad news"?!?! Have you ever seen how the birds are force-fed? It's like having a turkey baster shoved down your throat and a mix of oatmeal and bacon fat pumped into your stomach... several times a day. The birds vomit -- and often choke and die. Their livers we prize so much are actually bloated and diseased... that's why they're enlarged. I'd say this is very good news, and the start of a trend that I hope will gain traction across North America and beyond. Good on you, California.

Alisa Escanlar's picture

Hi Edana,

I was actually thinking of an article from Reuters when I wrote that comment. I'm sorry if it seemed I am the one saddened by this ban.

I see nothing wrong with eating liver, although like Amy I have never tried eating foie gras. I have tried eating some chicken,pork,and beef liver at some point in my life though.

I am also against the methods used by Foie Gras producers of force feeding the ducks. I believe there are other ways, more humane methods for getting the ducks to naturally eat their fill. I hope they wont repeal it like what happened in Chicago in 2008.

Edana Brown's picture

Thanks very much for your reply, Alisa, and to your and Chris' point, yes, it would be nice if the industry would simply use more humane methods -- and I know they exist. However, it seems in food-animal production that when left to its own devices, industry does what is profitable, not humane.

Chris Manteria's picture

This is a very tasty treat. It is too bad they have outlawed this instead of just regulating the industry and requiring them to convert to a humane and sustainable way of producing this delight. A Foie Gras hater that believes any Foie Gras should be outlawed.... Check this out: