“Foie Gras” Legal Battle Continues; Appellate Court to Hear Arguments over Local Eatery’s Violations

Posted on January 21, 2015

La Toque Restaurant Loses Motion in Trial Court After Illegally Selling Force-Fed Foie Gras

For immediate release:

Megan Backus, ALDF
Lisa Franzetta, ALDF

foie-gras-ducks-cc-Liberation-BCSAN FRANCISCO — Tomorrow, the Sonoma County-based national nonprofit Animal Legal Defense Fund (ALDF) heads back to court in their lawsuit against Napa’s La Toque restaurant for selling force-fed foie gras in violation of California’s ban. ALDF’s undercover investigations documented the Napa-based restaurant illegally selling foie gras in violation of California Health and Safety Code § 25982 while the ban was in place. ALDF alleges that La Toque tried to skirt the law by calling sales of banned foie gras “gifts.” In 2013, ALDF defeated La Toque’s claim that selling force-fed foie gras products was a free speech “protest.” The Napa County Superior Court denied La Toque’s motion, agreed with ALDF that selling foie gras is not protected by First Amendment, and that serving it to paying customers constitutes a sale, not a gift. La Toque appealed the court’s decision, which is the subject of tomorrow’s hearing.

When: Thursday, January 22, 2015, 11:00 A.M.

Where: California Court of Appeal, First Appellate District, 350 McAllister Street, San Francisco, CA 94102.

Foie gras is made by force-feeding young ducks until their livers balloon eight or more times their natural size, then slaughtering them for these diseased livers. Evidence of force-fed ducks in Sonoma who were fattened so inhumanely they could not escape being eaten alive by rats in dark, filthy pens spurred the 2004 ban which went into effect in 2012. Although a federal district court recently found the ban conflicts with a federal statute, ALDF is confident that decision will be reversed on appeal.

“La Toque’s repeated law-breaking contributed to the suffering of hundreds of thousands of birds,” said Stephen Wells, ALDF’s executive director. “The court has recognized that La Toque sold illegal and cruel products, despite La Toque’s absurd and arrogant claims, and we intend to ensure that those who violated this humane law are held accountable.”

Copies of the lawsuit are available by request. ALDF was founded in 1979 with the unique mission of protecting the lives and advancing the interests of animals through the legal system. For more information, please visit aldf.org.


10 thoughts on ““Foie Gras” Legal Battle Continues; Appellate Court to Hear Arguments over Local Eatery’s Violations

  1. Pam Buckley says:

    This is torture for these animals! Violators of the law, should be held accountable.

  2. Elena nemesu says:

    Please stop this cruelty!!

  3. Sandra Faucher says:

    NO excuse for animal abuse

  4. Terry Poage says:

    This is just cruel. There is no reason to treat any animal this way. This makes me sick and I will never eat duck !!!!!!!!!!1

  5. Melinda Bedrossian says:

    Law makers must be held accountable for their decisions. …..Be careful what laws you pass. It is no longer ok to torture abuse or hurt animals just to further your career. You may be sitting on the street corner with all the other unemployed people. We, the public, are watching the decisions you make

  6. lisa says:

    their still doing this I thought THey stopped please help… and Thankyou its evil

  7. laura redding says:

    STOP this Disgusting, Cruel, Horrific Torture RIGHT NOW!

  8. Marcia Mueller says:

    Animal cruelty is wrong for any reason, but to torture the birds just because people want a brief taste of something they like is repulsive.

  9. Pauline Hodson says:

    fois gras production is a Vile disgusting practice of cruelty to animals. I can’t believe it isn’t Banned Internationally. I don’t care if France protests – the World is horrified by this barbarity and evil.

  10. A Kladar says:

    Please stop this horrific treatment of animals. This is sickening.

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