Hudson Valley Foie Gras Co-owner Sneaks Banned Product into Event

Dec 06, 2010, 04:13 ET from Animal Protection & Rescue League

CAMBRIDGE, Mass., Dec. 6, 2010 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- Hudson Valley Foie Gras co-owner Michael Ginor snuck his product into an event here under a different name last week after organizers asked participating chefs not to serve the controversial item at a charity fundraiser. The restaurant hosting the event called the incident "unfortunate."

The Animal Protection & Rescue League (APRL) had referred organizers to its website A similar event the Bernards Inn in New Jersey was to host last week featuring HVFG was canceled after APRL contacted organizers.

In the 2009 book by Mark Caro, The Foie Gras Wars, Ginor states, "I felt like I was never 100-percent wholesome with it in the sense that I think you can't be 100-percent wholesome with it," referring to force feeding ducks to expand their livers to 12 times their normal size to make the controversial product.

APRL helped pass a California law banning sale or production of foie gras starting in 2012, and five city councils have commended APRL for its work and encouraged restaurants to remove the item before the ban.

One restaurant, Andaz West Hollywood, responded with a letter claiming animal husbandry consultant Temple Grandin was overseeing a "humane animal care" program at Hudson Valley Foie Gras. A call to Ms. Grandin confirmed this was not true, and Ms. Grandin does not encourage force feeding.

In The Foie Gras Wars, Grandin describes a foie gras farm she visited in France as "hideous." Although she did not visit HVFG personally, her stated view is that if the ducks are actively avoiding the force feeder, this indicates force feeding is cruel.

In 2008, the group Compassion Over Killing obtained hidden camera footage of a guided tour of HVFG in which the ducks can clearly be seen struggling to get away from the force feeder, all while the guide is declaring the ducks are not showing "aversive behavior." See

Earlier investigations by APRL found ducks struggling to get away from workers jamming large metal pipes down their throats, and trash barrels full of dead ducks.

APRL will be protesting outside of Animal Restaurant in Los Angeles on Dec. 15, as the restaurant has declined to remove foie gras after several contacts over the past four months. For a list of restaurants that have removed it and more info, see

SOURCE Animal Protection & Rescue League