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March 2, 2006
Contact: Kristie Phelps, IDA, (757) 423-0093
Daniel Rolke, Djurrättsalliansen, +076 230 12 00 or firstname.lastname@example.org
Swedish Duck Defenders Ruffle Feathers of Foie Gras Industry
Over Thirty Restaurants Join Global Campaign Against Force-Feeding for Culinary Creation
Stockholm--Animal protection advocates are applauding the more than thirty restaurants in Stockholm, Are, and Malmo for their compassionate decisions to stop selling foie gras, the diseased livers of force-fed ducks. The campaign, spearheaded by Swedish animal rights organization Djurrättsalliansen just a month ago, has resulted in a tremendous outpouring of support from the Swedish restaurant industry.
Villa Brevik, Amaranten, Hasseludden/Yasuragi, Fredsgatan 12, Stadshuskallaren, Beluga Restaurant, Nordic museum Restaurant, Bockholmen Hav & Restaurant, Bommersvik, Grodan, Mickes fisk (shop), Stallmästaregården, Café Opera, J Restaurant & Sealodge, Restaurant J, Hotel J, Stockholms matvarufabrik, Nalen, Kumla Herrgard, Tabac bar och matsal, Hasselbacken, Restaurang Atrium (National museum), Grodan Sergel, Djursholms Wardshus, Langholmens vardshus, Skafferiet AB, Jarnet matsal och bar, and Undici in Stockholm Marmite in Are, and Sturehof in Malmo join Stockholm�s exclusive restaurant Operakallaren, the world famous Charlie Trotter�s in Chicago and compassionate restaurants around the world in eschewing the cruel product that has been banned in fifteen countries. To produce foie gras, workers shove rigid pipes into the birds� throats twice per day, every day. The ducks who survive the feedings suffer from a painful illness that causes their livers to swell up five to ten times their normal size.
Investigations in France and at the only two foie gras farms in the U.S. prove that one standard of foie gras production�regardless of the region�is cruelty. In France, investigators saw thousands of ducks intensively confined in cages so small that they were unable to raise a wing. Undercover investigations in the U.S. revealed ducks overcrowded and crammed into filthy, feces-ridden sheds. Birds suffering diarrhea and vomiting after four pounds of corn mash was forcefully pumped down their throats were documented, and in the U.S. investigators found barrels full of dead ducks who had choked or whose organs ruptured during the traumatic force-feeding process. Investigators in France also witnessed workers cruelly twisting the necks of female ducklings�deemed unprofitable "trash" by the industry�until they snapped.
The controversy surrounding foie gras production has become a hotly debated international issue. Although fewer than ten nations produce foie gras, at least fifteen nations including Israel and Germany have banned force-feeding because of its inherent cruelty. California passed a ban on the sale and production of foie gras from force-fed birds in 2004, and nationwide protests exposing the cruelty of foie gras have resulted in many U.S. restaurants permanently removing foie gras from their menu and vowing to no longer serve foie gras.
"Anyone buying or selling foie gras is directly responsible for the suffering of ducks," said Elliot M. Katz, DVM, president of IDA. "We are pleased that so many restaurants in Sweden have joined the ranks of compassionate restaurants around the globe that are removing cruel foie gras from their menus and hope other Portland restaurants will follow their lead." For more information, please visit www.StopForceFeeding.com. Broadcast quality footage of foie gras investigations is available upon request.