Vegetarians International Voice for Animals

Contact Your Local Councillor!

More and more council across Britain are banning foie-gras from council buildings and events, as well as writing to businesses to say that foie-gras is no longer welcome. To do this, it needs to come from a local person - i.e. you! Below is information on how to do this.

We can provide you a short film on DVD that you can send to them, as well as other materials. If you would like them email justin@viva.org.uk

I would suggest writing to your councillor to consider putting forward a motion similar to the one that was successful in York (below).

Enclose the any materials we have sent to you with an explanation of where they are from. Say that, as a local person, you are concerned that foie-gras is being sold near where you live and you would like the council to follow York's lead by cementing their opposition to this cruel trade. If they want more information they can always contact us.

You can include in you letter something along the lines of:

"As a local person, I urge you to follow the lead of York and Bath where the local councils declared all council building foie-gras free zones and encouraged local businesses to ditch this 'torture in a tin'.

I am very disappointed that foie-gras is freely for sale in my local area (check that it is!) and I urge you to take this opportunity to take an ethical decision and vote for animal welfare.

Foie-gras is the grossly enlarged liver of a duck or goose and is essentially a disease, marketed as a delicacy. Birds raised for this 'gourmet' cruelty are force-fed enormous quantities of food through a long metal pipe, three times a day. This process of deliberate and painful overfeeding continues for up to a month by which time the birds' livers have swelled to ten times their normal size. Force feeding results in the premature deaths of around 1 million birds in France every year.

Foie-gras is not produced in Britain, as the Government has made it clear that its production would contravene existing animal welfare regulations, but sadly it is still perfectly legal to import it. Even the previous Government minister responsible for animal welfare, Ben Bradshaw, encouraged a consumer boycott. Its production has been outlawed in Poland, Denmark, Germany, Norway and Israel. It will soon be banned in the State of California.

Public opinion is very much against the sale of foie-gras. Supermarket chain Lidl removed foie-gras after animal campaigning group Viva! contacted them and detailed the cruelty behind its production and wholesalers Makro quickly followed. Recently department store House of Fraser and Harvey Nichols have banned foie-gras on ethical grounds.The world's largest online retailer, Amazon, also dropped foie-gras from their British marketplace recently.

Below I have included the motion that was successful in York:

"Council notes that:

  • to produce foie gras, at just 12 weeks old ducks and geese are restrained and grain is forced down the throat through a tube or pipe, a process that often results in physical injury
  • they are forcibly fed the equivalent to an adult human eating 1-28 lbs (7-13kg) of spaghetti a day; and after two or three weeks, when they are ready for slaughter, their livers will have swelled to about ten times its normal size. Their swollen liver expands the abdomen and can make movement and breathing difficult, as well as causing other health problems
  • most ducks are kept in wire cages so small they have no room to turn around or stretch their wings, and their feet are often injured by the wire floor
  • many die before the end of the force feeding cycle ends and the mortality rate for ducks raised on foie gras farms is overwhelmingly the highest in the industry
  • the force-feeding of geese and ducks is already outlawed in Poland, Denmark, Germany, Norway and Israel and Britain (but the importation is not)

Council believes that:

  • this intolerably cruel and painful practice is unnecessary and should end;
  • the torture of small innocent animals should not be a matter of personal dietary choice"

Please see the information enclosed from Viva!. I also encourage you to view footage of foie-gras production enclosed.

 

Finally, I implore you to take action so that our council takes a stand against the intolerable cruelty involved in foie-gras production.

Thank you for your time."