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Best Place To Get Foie Gras In California  
User currently onlinezckls04 From United States of America, joined Dec 2011, 1376 posts, RR: 4
Posted (1 year 1 week 5 days 1 hour ago) and read 2013 times:

Just wondering if any Californians among you have tried to get Foie Gras from out-of-state since the ludicrous ban imposed on us by our overlords.

I know you can get it at a few restaurants in the city if you ask nicely, but I'm looking for some to eat at home. I know there's a company called "Mirepoix" in Nevada which mail-orders, but I'm not sure what the quality of Foie Gras from Reno would be like. Has anybody used them?

I know Hudson Valley Farms in NY will send me some, but the overnight shipping is pretty expensive from there.

Any suggestions?


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15 replies: All unread, jump to last
 
User currently offlineRussianJet From Belgium, joined Jul 2007, 7703 posts, RR: 21
Reply 1, posted (1 year 1 week 4 days 15 hours ago) and read 1946 times:
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Quoting zckls04 (Thread starter):
I know Hudson Valley Farms in NY will send me some, but the overnight shipping is pretty expensive from there.

I'm guessing (and have to admit I have very little specific knowledge of the issue) that if it's banned in California, it might just be worth sucking up the expensive shipping costs to get the occasional treat and know you're buying a good product. Other than that, maybe give the desert foie gras a go, and if it's no good just don't get it again! Admittedly it's an expensive thing to experiment with though, so as I say, maybe worth sticking with the expensive option as a rare treat?



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User currently offlinesrbmod From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Reply 2, posted (1 year 1 week 4 days 12 hours ago) and read 1905 times:

Quoting zckls04 (Thread starter):
Best Place To Get Foie Gras In California

Las Vegas......    Hey that's where most Californians go to enjoy things banned in California....

Technically restaurants in California are not supposed to serve it all, even for free and some places have been popped for doing that.

Mirepoix seems like a legit supplier and they're getting it from Hudson Valley. There's not a lot of online charcuterie shops that offer it either as they typically will only ship cured meats that do not require refrigeration. I've come across an online gourmet food retailer that seems to have a sizable selection of fresh and prepared foie gras products and overnight shipping isn't too bad either.

http://www.gourmetfoodstore.com/foie...d=W2L80J81F5FV9HH3JTHWS3LLNWCUBS67


User currently offlineAesma From France, joined Nov 2009, 6656 posts, RR: 11
Reply 3, posted (1 year 1 week 4 days 8 hours ago) and read 1839 times:

Technically it's possible to make foie gras without force feeding, it's just more expensive since the resulting foie is smaller. If provided with unlimited food ducks/geese will eat a lot, it's in their nature of migratory birds.

To me this ban is highly hypocritical when most of the beef in the US is corn fed and injected with hormones.



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User currently offlineRussianJet From Belgium, joined Jul 2007, 7703 posts, RR: 21
Reply 4, posted (1 year 1 week 4 days 8 hours ago) and read 1837 times:
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Quoting Aesma (Reply 6):
To me this ban is highly hypocritical when most of the beef in the US is corn fed and injected with hormones.

Quite so. Only today I finally got round to watching King Corn - very informative film.



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User currently onlinezckls04 From United States of America, joined Dec 2011, 1376 posts, RR: 4
Reply 5, posted (1 year 1 week 4 days ago) and read 1784 times:

Quoting srbmod (Reply 2):
Mirepoix seems like a legit supplier and they're getting it from Hudson Valley.

Doh- I should have read more carefully- I didn't realize their supplier was Hudson Valley!

Quoting srbmod (Reply 2):
I've come across an online gourmet food retailer that seems to have a sizable selection of fresh and prepared foie gras products and overnight shipping isn't too bad either.

Interesting- they get French Foie Gras. I wonder if that's better.



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User currently offlinesrbmod From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Reply 6, posted (1 year 1 week 3 days 13 hours ago) and read 1737 times:

Quoting Aesma (Reply 3):
To me this ban is highly hypocritical when most of the beef in the US is corn fed and injected with hormones.

Beef these days here lacks the flavor that it had 15-20+ years ago as a result. However, more and more ranchers are rejecting these ways and going back to more traditional methods of raising cattle and eschewing the factory feed lots from which so much beef in the US is sourced. They're also building their own slaughterhouses and controlling all of the steps up to when the meat is sold to distributors. Typically, a rancher raises calves until they are about 2 years old and then get sold to a commercial beef producer who speed up their growth with hormones and fed with feed laced with antibiotics and other drugs and the cattle aren't confined in cramped feedlots. There's a charcuterie/butcher shop here in Atlanta that I go to every once in awhile that gets most of their beef from a farm in North Carolina that is doing things in the old ways and it tastes like beef used to taste years ago. The meat isn't that much more expensive than beef raised in commercial feed lot factories, but even a dollar or two a pound more in price isn't going to get everyone to switch because some people simply cannot afford the difference.

One way to look at it, ducks and geese are cuter than cows and certain groups only seem to really get up in arms when it comes to cute animals. There's also a growing backlash to the factory farming of meat in this country and it's not just the animal rights crowd that's fanning those flames. I think all of the hormones and antibiotics being put into animals in order to speed up their growth is a more offensive thing than the gravage techniques used to fatten the livers of ducks and geese. Ducks and geese are fattened up for a short period (2-3 weeks) before their slaughter while cattle and poultry are being medicated and for months on end before being slaughtered.


User currently offlineRussianJet From Belgium, joined Jul 2007, 7703 posts, RR: 21
Reply 7, posted (1 year 1 week 3 days 12 hours ago) and read 1718 times:
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Quoting srbmod (Reply 6):
One way to look at it

All very good points.

I guess it's pretty much a pointless exercise trying to debate whether it's more cruel to confine cattle unnaturally while feeding them a diet of antibiotics and corn, neither of which nature intended for them, versus the force-feeding of ducks and geese with similarly unnatural consequences. In my view, both could be deemed equally unnatural and distressing.

I suppose the thing is, however, that the cattle constantly helping themselves to grains made available to them, while getting too little exercise, lacks the immediate visual impact of the feeding tubes being rammed down a bird's throat. Let's be honest about it, it's a very ugly process which fairly understandably gives rise to concern. It's fairly hard to think of any direct, intensive and quite violent regime which could stand up to direct comparison, with perhaps the exception of veal crates. Even battery hens lack the force-feeding aspect, with the main concern being the unnatural and highly-restrictive living conditions.

I think that it's probably worth trying to support a more humane approach to the production of foie gras, one which has already been mentioned in the thread and which is more equivalent to the cattle example. However, there are ugly ends of any large, meat-producing wedge. I therefore wouldn't necessarily blame someone for helping themselves to foie gras produced in the standard way, mainly for the reasons I mentioned previously - the fact that if you eat meat and animal products then you're already involved in animal cruelty. On the other hand though, there's nothing wrong with trying to raise standards; it just needs to be done constructively.

As is often the way with prohibitions, there is little practical improvement in standards arising as a result of them. If there were incentives and genuine encouragement to improve standards in welfare while still offering the product, we'd likely see an awful lot more progress. Creating a situation where people will need to go out of their way to obtain the product at any cost, rather than being faced with the choice of easily-obtainable products which differ in terms of quality and welfare regimes, is completely counter-productive.

Egg farming in the UK is a prime example of where consumers have been given such a choice and have voted with their wallets in the most powerful way. The free-range and organic egg market is massive as a result, and it seems inconceivable that we could see a return to the overwhelming dominance of battery egg farming. Foie gras production needs to be treated in a similar way, because that way everyone wins. Simply labeling people as pariahs invokes rebelliousness and resistance.



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User currently onlinezckls04 From United States of America, joined Dec 2011, 1376 posts, RR: 4
Reply 8, posted (1 year 1 week 3 days 10 hours ago) and read 1696 times:

Quoting RussianJet (Reply 7):
I suppose the thing is, however, that the cattle constantly helping themselves to grains made available to them, while getting too little exercise, lacks the immediate visual impact of the feeding tubes being rammed down a bird's throat. Let's be honest about it, it's a very ugly process which fairly understandably gives rise to concern.

That's because of our tendency to anthropomorphize ducks. We imagine them having gag reflexes and soft throats, and being unable to breathe when their throats are blocked; none of which are the case.

I agree that battery farming is awful, and farms which practice it should be shut down, but I think it's unfair to judge an industry by its worst examples- as you say one can improve standards in a constructive way.

I also think with Foie Gras there is an element of class warfare because it's a luxury product. Supermarket Chicken Nuggets don't get nearly the same level of scrutiny.



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User currently offlineRussianJet From Belgium, joined Jul 2007, 7703 posts, RR: 21
Reply 9, posted (1 year 1 week 3 days 10 hours ago) and read 1694 times:
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Quoting zckls04 (Reply 8):
I also think with Foie Gras there is an element of class warfare because it's a luxury product. Supermarket Chicken Nuggets don't get nearly the same level of scrutiny.

Quite agree, It's reverse snobbism at least as much as genuine welfare concerns. A more expensive foie gras, made with higher standards of welfare (gag reflex or no, it does obviously distress the animals) would give people proper choice, with they would no doubt in many cases be prepared to pay the relatively small premium incurred,

One thing's for sure though - it's a delicious thing, and I'd love to have some right now. I personally favour duck foie gras for taste, and love it for meat too - though I think goose it the better meat - just more expensive!



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User currently offlinePhilBy From France, joined Aug 2013, 649 posts, RR: 1
Reply 10, posted (1 year 1 week 2 days 15 hours ago) and read 1643 times:

Quoting Aesma (Reply 3):
Technically it's possible to make foie gras without force feeding, it's just more expensive since the resulting foie is smaller. If provided with unlimited food ducks/geese will eat a lot, it's in their nature of migratory birds.

I think that you also have to limit their access to other, natural, food sources and restict their movement. Our (almost) free-range ducks and geese have all-you-can-eat corn and there is no way that they can be used for foiegras.

Perhaps I should try putting one in a smaller enclosure.   


User currently offlineDocLightning From United States of America, joined Nov 2005, 19703 posts, RR: 58
Reply 11, posted (1 year 1 week 2 days 5 hours ago) and read 1609 times:

Quoting RussianJet (Reply 7):
I suppose the thing is, however, that the cattle constantly helping themselves to grains made available to them, while getting too little exercise, lacks the immediate visual impact of the feeding tubes being rammed down a bird's throat.

Cattle overeating and being fed chemicals and not getting exercise? I mean, if it's good enough for us humans, then...   

It's not just bad for the cows, but for the consumers. Grains are high in omega-6 polyunsaturated fatty acids, while grass-fed cattle are relatively enriched in omega-3 polyunsaturated fatty acids. The result is that grain-fed beef increases the risk for heart disease, while grass-fed beef tends to actually have the opposite effect (when consumed in moderation). I remember when I went to Argentina and ate nothing but beef and potatoes for a month...and lost weight. The difference? Grass-fed, free-range.

And so I only buy grass-fed, free-range beef. It is expensive, so we only eat it every week or two. I also use ALL the beef. The dogs get the bone and I render any trimmed fat for cooking later.


User currently offlineRussianJet From Belgium, joined Jul 2007, 7703 posts, RR: 21
Reply 12, posted (1 year 1 week 2 days 4 hours ago) and read 1584 times:
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Quoting DocLightning (Reply 11):
overeating and being fed chemicals and not getting exercise?

Have you been spying on me???



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User currently offlinePellegrine From United States of America, joined Mar 2007, 2445 posts, RR: 8
Reply 13, posted (1 year 1 week 1 day 19 hours ago) and read 1549 times:

The California law is so stupid it is inane.

You can buy foie gras through any number of mail order suppliers. The only thing the CA law prohibits...horribly vaguely...is the resale of foie gras within California. LOL, some restaurants still serve it.

Snobs and non-snobs and all, I've always been a caviar connoisseur more than foie gras.

Full disclosure: I am a pescetarian and sensitive to the welfare of animals. Maybe the US including CA should look at the rearing and slaughter of caged chickens...of which there are tens of millions...



oh boy!!!
User currently onlinefrancoflier From France, joined Oct 2001, 3762 posts, RR: 11
Reply 14, posted (1 year 1 week 1 day 18 hours ago) and read 1540 times:

Quoting srbmod (Reply 6):
I think all of the hormones and antibiotics being put into animals in order to speed up their growth is a more offensive thing than the gravage techniques used to fatten the livers of ducks and geese.

Not only that, but the resulting effect on us humans who consume that beef is quite alarming.

Quoting RussianJet (Reply 7):
In my view, both could be deemed equally unnatural and distressing.

Yes, but when you look at the scale of things, the millions cattle heads being treated and fed that way, often slaughtered in less than ideal ways, versus the relatively trivial foie gras production...

Quoting RussianJet (Reply 7):
I think that it's probably worth trying to support a more humane approach to the production of foie gras,

I think so too. Problem is that manufacturers have tried to make foie gras more accessible to more consumers by reducing production costs, making it even worse for the poor animals. Whereas geese and ducks would be force fed in small scale operations led by independent farmers, now bigger food manufacturers have introduced an industrial twist to it with similarities to the battery farms the poultry industry uses.

It's better to stick to the good quality, farm produced stuff. Foie gras is not an everyday food anyway.



Looks like I picked the wrong week to quit posting...
User currently offlineSmittyOne From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Reply 15, posted (1 year 6 days 14 hours ago) and read 1452 times:

Quoting srbmod (Reply 6):
The meat isn't that much more expensive than beef raised in commercial feed lot factories, but even a dollar or two a pound more in price isn't going to get everyone to switch because some people simply cannot afford the difference.

I'm not blasting you, but this seems incredibly penny wise and pound foolish. If people were eating as much meat as they really should this would not be an issue...

Make the meat lower quality, so that it's less expensive, so people feel that they can afford to eat more of it so that they can incur the medical costs that result from it down the road!

I was thinking about our obesity/diabetes/heart disease/cancer epidemic in this country yesterday and it occurred to me that people are basically no different than they were a hundred years ago. Not physically (other than daily physical activity...but then again who actually 'worked out' on purpose in 1913?) and I'd suggest not even in terms of their willpower or psychological propensity to be gluttons at the table. What has changed is our food chain...we've basically been betrayed for a buck by the engineering of our own sustenance industry in the name of getting 'more, cheaper' and it shows on our bodies. Sad.


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