Frequently Asked Questions

What is Foie Gras?

Foie Gras is the liver of a goose or duck, which is farm raised and harvested for consumption.

Is Foie Gras in New York State produced on a factory farm?

NO, our ducks are raised on small farms by attentive farm workers, who care for each duck from birth to harvest.  Raising our ducks in a stress free and comfortable environment is the key to producing quality foie gras.

Foie Gras in New York State is Cage Free

Unlike many poultry farms, we believe in providing conditions which allow for social interaction, exercise and freedom of movement for our ducks. For this reason, they are always kept cage free, inside a large, safe indoor pasture with windows for natural light.

Does the feeding process hurt the ducks?

NO. The unique physiology of ducks allows for hand feeding that is stress free, non-invasive, and causes no discomfort. Ducks do not have a gag reflex and have esophagi that are able to swallow large, sharp fish in the wild without pain, let alone a smooth small plastic tube. Some activists will claim we use metal tubes to inject large amounts of food into the animal’s stomach. This is patently false. We use small plastic tubes that deposit a small amount of wet, natural food in a feeding sac at the base of the duck’s throat. Ducks are never feed more than 9 ounces of grain at a time, which is less than half the capacity of their feeding sac. If, at the time of a feeding, the duck has not fully digested, the feeding is skipped. More info from independent veterinarians and academic studies can be found on our Article Page.

Are the ducks’ livers diseased?

NO. Ducks are uniquely adapted to store fat in their liver when abundant food is available. While in mammals, extra fat in the liver is a problem, in waterfowl, it causes no pain or sickness and is reversible. Click the following links to read testimony from an independent veterinarian, and to read the California court decision stating livers are not diseased. Click for the Independent Veterinarian  | Click for the California Court Decision

Are the ducks harvested only for their livers?

NO. We make use of all parts of the duck including meat, feathers, and offal in high quality duck meat, natural pet food, and other products. Nothing is wasted.

How many people are employed by the Foie Gras farms in New York State?

Foie Gras farms in the Catskills employ approximately 400 people.  This doesn’t include the many additional jobs associated with the distribution and sale of foie gras.  Our duck farmers are provided with housing, free health care, and for many of them, a path to citizenship if they have immigrated to the US.

Would a ban of Foie Gras in New York City hurt these New Yorkers?

Yes, if New York City banned Foie Gras, farms would be reduced to a fraction of their capacity and would likely shutter, eliminating the jobs for these families and their economic stability.

How do the Foie Gras farms in New York State compare to other types of animal farms?

Our animals live lives that are more natural and comfortable than the vast majority of poultry, dairy, beef, and pork farms in New York State.  Banning the sale of Foie Gras is an arbitrary act, based on misinformation, that would harm the lives of thousands of New Yorkers for no salient purpose.

Are the Foie Gras farms transparent and open for visitors?

YES!  We have extended an invitation to all Elected Officials and media outlets to visit our farms and see first-hand how ducks are raised, cared for, fed, and slaughtered.

Have any current City Council members visited the farm?

At this point, no City Council members who are considering a ban on Foie Gras have visited the farm to see for themselves. In the past, Elected Officials considering a ban have visited the farm, including Assembly member Michael Benjamin and staff of Council member Alan Gerson.  In both cases, they dropped their support for the ban after realizing our farms were not inhumane or cruel to the animals.