Animal rights groups Wednesday sought to ban foie gras production in New York, one of the leading U.S. producing states, arguing that overfeeding birds to fatten their livers makes the animals sick.
The Humane Society of the United States filed a formal action with the New York State Department of Agriculture and Markets to stop the practice under a state law that makes it illegal to produce food from diseased animals.
“It’s illegal for farmers to intentionally make their animals sick and then sell them at market as if nothing were wrong,” said Carter Dillard of the Humane Society.
The Humane Society, with other animal rights groups, filed 900 pages of documents arguing that ducks and geese are force-fed for weeks until their livers become fattened.
Originally a French delicacy, foie gras literally means “fat liver.”
According to the Humane Society, California and more than a dozen countries have already banned the production of foie gras, and Chicago recently banned its sale because of animal welfare concerns.