Will Defra keep its promise to ban foie gras?

Strain is mounting on Defra to ban imports of foie gras into the UK because of the strategies used through the manufacturing course of.

Geese may be pressure fed in an effort to produce foie gras

Ministers from throughout the political divide have launched an open letter urging Setting Secretary, George Eustice MP, and Animal Welfare Minister, Lord Zac Goldsmith, to stipulate particularly when and the way the Authorities plans to ban the importation of foie gras made by force-feeding.
The apply of force-feeding is banned within the UK, and earlier this month spokesperson from the Division for Setting, Meals, and Rural Affairs (Defra) mentioned “the federal government is contemplating the additional steps it might absorb relation to foie grass”.
But main political figures stay sceptical. In response to this public assertion, representatives from events throughout Wales, Scotland, Northern Eire and England have signed onto an open letter tackling the matter. Coordinated by worldwide animal safety organisation, Animal Equality, signatories name for a concrete roadmap to be shared so “this optimistic promise turns into a actuality.”
With endorsement from Liberal Democrat MP Wera Hobhouse, Labour MP Hilary Benn, SNP MP Dr Lisa Cameron, DUP MP Jim Shannon, Inexperienced Celebration MP Caroline Lucas, and Plaid Cymru MP Ben Lake, policymakers of various political persuasions have joined collectively to finish what Animal Equality has referred to as a “torturous therapy for this merciless product”.
Because the letter states, historic division retailer Fortnum and Mason stopped promoting foie gras on its cabinets, after coming beneath rising strain as one of many final of London’s conventional nice shops to proceed promoting the product.
The decision has additionally been endorsed by distinguished Conservative Celebration figures, who’ve been campaigning on this matter for a while. This contains MPs Henry Smith, Sir David Amess and Rt Hon Sir Mike Penning, who’ve respectively hosted a Home of Commons reception and submitted Early Day Motions calling for the product to be banished from British shores.
The foie gras force-feeding course of – also referred to as gavage – includes pushing a tube down the throats of geese and geese to feed them. The letter claims there may be “an abundance of scientific proof, together with a research carried out by the College of Cambridge in 2015, displaying that foie gras manufacturing by force-feeding generates extreme bodily and psychological ache for the animals concerned, not solely completely when the tube is inserted of their throats, but in addition throughout different occasions all through their quick lives.”
The manufacturing course of causes their livers to swell bigger than its pure dimension, at which level the animals are slaughtered and the enlarged liver bought. The manufacturing and importation of foie gras has been banned in a number of international locations and cities on animal cruelty grounds, together with India and, most just lately, New York Metropolis.
Foie gras is geese liver Foie gras can’t be produced within the UK because of the nation’s animal welfare legal guidelines, but it surely presently stays authorized to import
Pressure-feeding is illegitimate within the UK beneath the Animal Welfare Act (2006), in addition to The Welfare of Farmed Animals Laws (throughout England, Northern Eire, Scotland and Wales). Regardless of this, Animal Equality claims the UK permits round 200 tonnes of foie gras to enter its shores every year. The teams says an importation ban would spare an estimated 250,000 birds from struggling yearly.
“Foie gras is vile and has no place in our society. Whereas I stay cautiously optimistic about this historic laws lastly coming into place, it’s vital that the Authorities now specifies a date and its concrete plans for a ban. This must be written into regulation urgently – these animals have suffered lengthy sufficient,” mentioned Animal Equality’s Campaigns and Public Affairs Specialist, Jenny Canham.
“That is very welcome information and I’m happy to see that motion is being taken,” mentioned Lisa Cameron MP – a supporter of the marketing campaign.
“Foie gras is an immensely merciless product which causes an enormous quantity of animal struggling. We can not rightly consider ourselves as a nation of animal lovers while nonetheless promoting foie gras, which is why I’m becoming a member of Animal Equality’s name to implement a ban on foie gras imports and gross sales as quickly as potential!”

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