NEW YORK (Reuters) – New York Metropolis, usually considered because the nice eating capital of America, on Wednesday turned the most recent U.S. locality to ban the sale of foie gras, prompting the nation’s largest producer of foie gras to vow to mount a court docket battle to overturn it.
Foie gras, French for “fatty liver,” is a delicacy produced from the enlarged livers of geese and geese which were force-fed corn.
Animal rights teams contend that the force-feeding course of is painful and ugly. Farmers who elevate birds for foie gras defend their practices as humane.
The New York Metropolis Council voted 42-6 to “ban the sale or provision of sure force-fed poultry merchandise” starting in 2022, imposing a nice between $500 and $2,000 for every violation.
“The council is banning a extremely merciless and inhumane apply,” stated Jeremy Unger, spokesman for Council member Carlina Rivera of Manhattan, who launched the invoice.
The nation’s largest maker of foie gras, Hudson Valley Foie Gras, situated in Ferndale, New York, about 100 miles (160 km) northwest of New York Metropolis, defended the apply it makes use of to make the posh merchandise.
The opposite two foie gras makers in the US are La Belle Farms, additionally situated in Ferndale, and Au Bon Canard in Caledonia, Minnesota.
“I can let you know we take correct care of the birds,” stated Hudson Valley supervisor Marcus Henley. He stated the farm, which employs 400 folks, makes foie gras “in conformity with humane animal administration and in compliance with the legal guidelines of the state of New York.”
The ban would take impact in three years, in a transfer meant to offer farmers time to retool their companies to deal with different merchandise, Unger stated.
However Henley stated New York Metropolis represents a couple of third of his farm’s revenues and moderately than planning to regulate its enterprise, he intends to go to court docket to hunt to overturn it. It was unclear what number of eating places and groceries can be affected by the ban.
“We don’t have an actual quantity however roughly 1 % of eating places in New York Metropolis serve it,” Unger stated.
Foie gras bans handed elsewhere in the US have had combined outcomes. Chicago’s Metropolis Council accepted a ban in 2006, solely to repeal it two years later after then-Mayor Richard Daley known as it the “silliest ordinance” ever handed within the Windy Metropolis, which made it “the laughingstock of the nation.”
California’s ban on foie gras went into impact in 2012 and stays in impact after the U.S. Supreme Courtroom, the nation’s highest court docket, in January declined to listen to an enchantment from foie gras producers.
Reporting by Barbara Goldberg; Enhancing by Cynthia Osterman and Leslie Adler