Foie Gras


Driving around the Dordogne region of France it is inevitable that you will sooner or later come across some Geese, lots of them! One day we stopped the car for a better look at these birds who seem to have a wonderful life. They have plenty of space, lots of shade, water to drink and bathe in and of course more food than they can eat. The catch is of course that these Geese are made to eat more than they are naturally capable of.

‘Foie Gras’ literally means ‘Fat Liver’! These geese are force fed by hand or machine (read about it here), so that their livers will be as large and fatty as possible.

I’m afraid to say that I was unaware of just how intensive the process was until reading about it upon our return home. I wish now that I had not bought a jar of Pâté (€12 for 100g) that now sits on a table in our dining room along with lots of other food that we bought back – actually not much of the other food left now!

Perhaps I am just being naive; there are of course many things involved in food production that I and many are uncomfortable with, such as with intensive egg and poultry production, pigs who live their entire miserable lives in dark concrete sheds, veal and farmed fish to name but a few. Our response to this is to try to be aware enough of the issues so as to not buy products where we are not happy with the method of production involved.  Perhaps if I knew more I would end up being a vegetarian – something I certainly could not stomach!

3 Comments to “Foie Gras”

  1. I’m with you on much of this. I refuse to eat veal, and I look for free range eggs & poultry. My daughter has taken the vegetarian route. She worked at a zoo in high school, gave up meat during lent two years in a row, then decided to stay vegetarian.

    • I sympathize with your daughter – I would quite happily be a vegetarian if I didn’t enjoy eating meat so much! Sadly I think that often we are unaware of what happens in food production and if we knew more then perhaps there would be an outcry and standards would be improved.

  2. The dairy industry directly funds the Veal industry, so any vegetarian who drinks milk, eats cheese, etc… is a bit of a hypocrite.
    Either vegan or neither but vegetarianism for animal rights is just ‘half arsed’.

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