Sonoma Foie Gras Secures Passage of SB 1520 Reports Humane Farming Association

Force-Feeding LEGALIZED in California

'We asked the Governor to sign the bill.'

-- Guillermo Gonzalez, Owner, Sonoma Foie Gras

'SB 1520 does not ban the food product, foie gras.'

-- Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger

Oct 01, 2004, 01:00 ET from Humane Farming Association

    SAN FRANCISCO, Oct. 1 /PRNewswire/ -- The following is being issued by
 Humane Farming Association:
     Over the vehement protests of informed animal activists and concerned
 citizens, California's sole foie gras producer, the notorious Sonoma Foie Gras
 company, has successfully passed SB 1520 by Senator John Burton.
     As a result, California has become the first state in the nation to
 explicitly legalize the torturous practice of force-feeding ducks and geese to
 produce foie gras.
     For promotional purposes, some have attempted to portray SB 1520 as a
 "victory" for animals.  But, as noted in press reports,  "The state's lone
 farm engaged in the practice, Sonoma Foie Gras, also hailed it as a victory."
 It is easy to understand the industry's jubilation.
     In addition to protecting Sonoma Foie Gras for the next 7 1/2 years from
 being criminally prosecuted under the state's existing animal cruelty laws,
 SB 1520 also takes away the rights of citizens to bring civil lawsuits against
 the company for its force-feeding practices.  And it effectively eliminates a
 lawsuit that is currently pending against the company.  These are just some of
 the reasons why Sonoma Foie Gras went so far as to hire a lobbyist to secure
 the bill's passage.
     Proponents would like people to believe that SB 1520 "bans" foie gras.
 Governor Schwarzenegger's official statement on this legislation, however,
 dispels any such notions:
      "SB 1520 does not ban the food product, foie gras," Governor
 Schwarzenegger stated upon signing the measure.  "This bill provides 7 1/2
 years for agricultural husbandry practices to evolve and perfect a humane way
 for a duck to consume grain to increase the size of its liver through natural
 processes.  If agricultural producers are successful in this endeavor, the ban
 on foie gras sales and production in California will not occur."
     "This legislation is about the financial, political, and organizational
 interests of the people involved," said Bradley Miller, national director of
 the Humane Farming Association.  "What has been completely lost are the
 interests of the ducks that are being tortured right now -- and for years to
 come.  There is nothing, not one single thing, that alleviates their
 suffering. This morally bankrupt legislation only adds insult to injury."
     CONTACT:  Bradley Miller

SOURCE Humane Farming Association