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Old 12-08-2013, 11:25 AM   #1
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Foie Gras

It seems that Foie Gras isn't an endangered species yet. I was listening to PBS radio and there is a guy who has found that when geese are left completely to their own devices, they are genetically coded to gorge themselves in preparation for flying south. He has tame ducks, but raises them in large, fences pastures, where there is natural forage, such as barley, acorns, and other things that geese eat. Their wings are clipped so that they can't fly away. When the seasonal changes dictate, this gorging takes place naturally, after which, he harvests his geese. The livers are huge, and filled with fat, just as the force-fed geese livers used to be. He gets his foie gras without breaking any laws, simply by letting the geese do what geese naturally do.

The trick, it seems, is that you can't ever feed them. They have to live a wild-goose lifestyle. If you give them food, the gorging behavior never kicks in.

Many wild animals gorge themselves before winter, such as fish, birds, bears, all of the hibernating critters, etc. It's how they stay alive during the cold months. Even deer and moose gorge themselves. Big cats do it on every kill, as do wolves and most other predators.

American Humans do the same thing at Thanksgiving, Christmas, Easter, 4th of July, whenever someone else is paying the food bill, in the teen years, etc.

Seeeeya; Chief Longwind of the North

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Old 12-08-2013, 12:08 PM   #2
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I don't care what you say, I'm not serving barley and acorns for Christmas dinner.

Seriously, this may be a way to keep foie gras around in a reasonable way. I'd be curious to hear about a side by side comparison of force fed vs. naturally gorged livers.
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Old 12-08-2013, 12:40 PM   #3
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Originally Posted by Andy M. View Post
I don't care what you say, I'm not serving barley and acorns for Christmas dinner.

Seriously, this may be a way to keep foie gras around in a reasonable way. I'd be curious to hear about a side by side comparison of force fed vs. naturally gorged livers.
According to the reporter, they couldn't tell a difference. But I would think that at least the goose meat would have a more natural, maybe even gamey flavor. It would be interesting to have some, like you said, for a taste comparison.

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Old 12-08-2013, 04:25 PM   #4
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I read about that natural method about a year ago. I think it was a French goose farmer. In France you can't call it foie gras if the geese weren't force fed.

Foie gras - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
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Old 12-08-2013, 05:00 PM   #5
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There's a Spanish farmer who won a prestigious French food award for his foie gras. They weren't happy. He doesn't force feed his geese. His grandfather raised geese the same way, so this isn't a new method.

Eduardo Sousa - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

There's a Ted Talk about this: Dan Barber: A foie gras parable | Video on TED.com
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Old 12-17-2013, 07:36 AM   #6
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I think the Spanish farmer was probably the one Chief was talking about. I heard the same story on NPR's This American Life.
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Old 12-17-2013, 08:26 AM   #7
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IMO Foie Gras doesn't have a sufficient WOW factor to justify the price, I'm happy with chicken liver and so are the geese!
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Old 12-17-2013, 08:35 AM   #8
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Originally Posted by taxlady View Post
I read about that natural method about a year ago. I think it was a French goose farmer. In France you can't call it foie gras if the geese weren't force fed. [/url]
Not at all unusual for the French to stand by their guns and avoid change. Most of them seem to be under the impression their country is still relevant.

I'm kidding, of course... kind of.

I do like Foie Gras, but it's more of a rare treat. Although many consider it inhumane, I've always heard that the geese don't really protest being force fed.
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Old 12-17-2013, 08:44 AM   #9
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I'd really like to try it, but the cost is prohibitive. Mrs Hoot ain't gonna let me raise our own geese.....well, we could, but she ain't gonna stand for the usual end for such animals.
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Old 12-17-2013, 08:49 AM   #10
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I do like Foie Gras, but it's more of a rare treat. Although many consider it inhumane, I've always heard that the geese don't really protest being force fed.
It's not easy to protest when there's a metal pipe stuffed in your throat. The geese do suffer.

http://humanesociety.org/issues/forc...alifornia.html
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