On Monday, May 2, you featured an article about the mother duck who hatched
11 ducklings near the main entrance to the Treasury building in Washington DC.
The mother achieved celebrity status as she sat on her eggs for four weeks.
She became a tourist destination. The secret service protected her. After the
ducklings were deemed alive and well an elaborate operation, led by government
biologists, transported the new family to a park with a lake.
Contrast this to a commercial operation in the Hudson Valley in Ferndale NY
called Hudson Valley Foie Gras. Here, hidden away from tourists or visitors of
any kind, ducks are raised to produce the so called delicacy, foie gras. This is
achieved by shoving a rough metal pipe down their throats three times a day to
force feed a large amount of fatty gruel. This causes their livers to swell to
6-10 times normal size. They soon become too weak to walk. They show very clear
fear of their handlers. They are kept in filthy conditions. They have no pond in
which to swim and never see the sun. Some die before slaughter.
Autopsies reveal ruptured esophagi and livers, and a host of internal and
external infections. Their diseased livers (hepatic lipidosis) are processed
into foie gras which is considered a gourmet food item.
Many of the same people who were delighted the Treasury ducks will consume
this product, which is actually a diseased organ. Hudson Valley foie gras sells
to food stores and restaurants all across the country.
Please think before purchasing this product; and if you see it on a menu or
in a specialty food store, please consider telling the management that you
object to their selling a food item produced with deliberate cruelty to an
animal that has no way to speak for itself. For every duck you may see in a
natural environment, hundreds are hidden away and live the short, tortured lives
described above. Even if you do not and would not consume this product; you can
help by speaking out. You can learn more at
President, Mid-Hudson Vegetarian Society