Court rules California’s foie gras ban is constitutional

By on July 15, 2020 with 12 Comments

In yet another court victory against foie gras cruelty, a California judge yesterday ruled that the state’s foie gras sales ban is entirely constitutional, reaffirming California’s authority to keep cruel products out of its marketplace. The latest challenge to the law, which went into effect in 2012, was brought by out-of-state producers looking to promote the sale of this cruel product within California. The judge denied their request to strike down the law, and warned that the filing of any more similar challenges to the constitutionality of the law will result in court-ordered sanctions.

The court also noted that the law only bans the sale of foie gras in California, and was never intended to be an absolute ban on all possession or personal consumption of foie gras. Thus, the ruling does not change the legal landscape of foie gras sales in California, as some media outlets have erroneously reported. As the court explained, the ruling does not affect sellers of foie gras “who are located within California (e.g., restaurants),” which have been prohibited from selling such products for years.

The challenge defeated today was the latest in a series of ultimately unsuccessful challenges mounted by foie gras producers to a landmark law that does away with the sales of one of the worst abuses of animals raised for food. To produce foie gras, geese are typically fed through metal pipes forced down their throats, making their livers blow up to 10 times their natural size—a process known as gavage. The birds are then killed and their livers harvested as a fatty “delicacy.”

As the cruelty involved in foie gras production has come to light, it’s been increasingly regarded with distaste around the world. More than a dozen countries, including Denmark, Finland, Germany, Israel and the United Kingdom, have either prohibited force-feeding for foie gras production or interpreted it as illegal under existing anti-cruelty laws.

Californians have already made it clear that they will not stand for cruelty against animals raised for food. In 2018 the state passed a law against cage confinement that’s often referred to as the world’s strongest farm animal protection law. This victory is yet another reason why companies and producers clinging to abusive practices like force-feeding, battery cages and gestation crates should discard these practices once and for all.


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  1. Alan Alejandro Maldonado Ortiz says:

    esto no lo podemos permitir esto no puede seguir pasando que sigan dañando y lastimando los animalitos en qué mundo estamos viviendo manda el sufrimiento, el dolor,la violencia, la inconsciencia e inhumanidad siga pasando con los animalitos

  2. Carole Pizzillo says:

    So happy for this victory! What kind of mind ever conceived of this “delicacy” and the most efficient (and horrifically cruel) method for producing it?! What states allow this? What ones have laws banning gavage?
    Thank you for all you do to make life better for all animals!!

  3. Lavinia says:

    Keep sharing and open caring people’s eyes.

  4. R Welch says:

    This needs to stop! We need signatures and send to Congress

  5. Mary Fine says:

    That picture is disturbing. How can anyone cook or eat foie gras after looking at that photo?

  6. M Leybra says:

    Such unnecessary deliberate cruelty & animal suffering needs to be outlawed, federally, by Congress. Contacted by petition/ letters/ graphic photos of miserably confined, feces & blood covered animals being tortured like this. Get the ball rolling HSUS…. give doing something constructive your all-out best shot.

  7. katybyrne says:

    Where do we write to say foie de gras atrocious?
    Please ad that info to your posts.

  8. Linda shiles says:

    This is horribly wrong
    It should remain against the Law!

  9. Jeane Camargo da Silva says:

    É uma crueldade muito grande o que fazem com os animais!!

  10. Tan says:

    its murder

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