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Foie gras on the menu of guests at the Paris Olympics: 45,000 say no, supported by athletes, academics and environmentalists

The goal is to permanently eliminate the Foie gras from the hospitality menu of Olympic Games 2024. Because, according to the dozens of athletes, academics and environmentalists who have written an open letter to the organizers of the games, it makes no sense to eliminate it from the athletes’ menus and then leave it to guests willing to pay quite high prices for the hospitality menus. This is why many, including the environmentalist and BBC TV presenter Chris Packham, the New Zealand tennis player and Olympic champion Marcus Daniell and the former American cyclist and Olympic silver medalist Dotsie Bauschthey wanted to expose themselves by joining the 45 thousand who have signed the petition in recent days petition launched by Animal Equalitywhich since 2012 has conducted over 12 investigations into the foie gras industry in France and Spain, to eliminate the dish from the menu.

A 60% vegetarian menu, but not for (paying) guests

The story appears very contradictory: on the one hand, in fact, Olympic organizers have planned to serve 60% of dishes vegetarian or vegan, with a particular focus on sustainabilityso much so that the chef of the Olympic Games, Charles Guilloyhas publicly declared that he does not want to include foie gras in the menus because “Animal welfare is a topic dear to everyone”. On the other hand, however, the organization of the Olympic Games itself has planned premium package menus for guests which, in fact, contain this product.

When news of this contradiction spread, a letter was sent out, coordinated by Animal Equality and supported by veterinarians, legal scholars, animal rights activists and university researchers with expertise in infectious diseases, public health, animal behavior and food systems. which points the finger at the impact of foie gras production on animal welfare, the environment and human health. In particular, one wonders why “the organizing committee is sending the message that it is possible to accept payment for undeniably evil treatment of animals.”

Force-feeding of animals to obtain foie gras. The period from their birth to their killing is so short that in this industry ducks live only 3-5% of the time they would live in the wild and geese only 2-3%


The Cruelty Behind Force-Feeding Ducks and Geese

Second Animal Equality to obtain foie gras, which is now also produced using alternative methods and which in France is also made in a vegan version, «the ducks and geese used are force-fed up to 63 times during their lives, a practice that causes them extreme physical and psychological pain causing the liver of these animals to become ill with fatty liver disease. Once their livers have grown to enormous size, the animals are slaughtered. The period from their birth to their killing is so short that in this industry ducks live only 3-5% of the time they would live in the wild and geese only 2-3%.».

An unacceptable practice to be included in the menu of games that also celebrate physical health. “The Olympic Games – explain the signatories in the letter – celebrate some of the healthiest and fittest individuals on the planet; presenting foie gras at such an event is, with all due respect, a paradox”. Also recalling that “Foie gras is high in saturated fat and cholesterol, which can contribute to the development of heart disease, obesity and diabetes.. In recent years, foie gras farms in France have been devastated by deadly epidemics of avian influenza, leading to concerns about the impact that foie gras production may have on individual health and global public health.”

In short, a total failure for a food which, produced by force feeding, is banned in countries such as Austria, CroatiaCzech Republic, Denmark, Finland, Germany, Italy, Luxembourg, NorwayPoland and the United Kingdom. But the heavy impact in terms of sustainability is also highlighted. The “growing and transporting of cereals in monoculture, the use of water and synthetic fertilizers that contribute to the reduction and impoverishment of biodiversity, soil nutrients, water quality and ecosystems, while increasing greenhouse gas emissions”, are the negative elements that are highlighted in the letter.

.  SeineMaritime France November 15, 2023
. Seine-Maritime, France, November 15, 2023Stephane LEITENBERGER

The petition to say no has already collected 45 thousand signatures

“We have collected hundreds of hours of footage showing geese and ducks confined in wire cages, suffering from breathing difficulties, eye infections, broken wings and beaks. In late 2023, Animal Equality shared never-before-seen footage shot by its investigative team. It is urgent, for the sake of ducks and geese, to ensure that foie gras is banned from all restaurant menus, including those at major events such as the Paris 2024 Olympics,” he stressed. Matthew Cupi vice president of Animal Equality Europe which concludes: “Force-fed foie gras is considered criminal – literally – in many countries. It causes unimaginable pain to ducks and geese, puts excessive pressure on our precious environmental resources and puts human health at risk. We don’t want foie gras at the Games and neither do world-renowned Olympic champions, environmentalists and academics. The organisers of the Paris 2024 Olympics must listen to the experts and remove this dish from the menu immediately.”

Source: Vanity Fair

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