SCOTUS Declines Appeal on 'Misunderstood' Delicacy

Court leaves Californias foie gras ban in place
By Rob Quinn,  Newser Staff
Posted May 22, 2023 4:10 PM CDT
Supreme Court Leaves Foie Gras Ban in Place
Moulard ducks are caged and force-fed at Hudson Valley Foie Gras duck farm in Ferndale, New York, to fatten their livers to produce foie gras.   (AP Photo/Bebeto Matthews, File)

The Supreme Court has declined to hear a challenge to California's ban on foie gras, leaving in place a lower court ruling that upheld the ban. The lawsuit was brought by Canadian duck and goose farmers who described the fatty bird liver delicacy as the most "maligned and misunderstood food in the world," CNN reports. The farmers argued that they "care about their animals just as much as any California politician or animal-rights activist." They said their products passed federal inspection and California's ban violated federal law. France filed a "friend of the court" brief, saying foie gras "represents an enduring part of France’s heritage and culture that the federal government has worked with France to protect.”

Lawyers for California defended the ban, saying producing the delicacy involves using a feeding tube to force the birds to consume more food than they would voluntarily. California's legislature "considered evidence that the process of force-feeding ducks and geese causes extreme suffering," state attorney general Rob Bonta said. The court did not comment on why it declined the appeal. Earlier this month, the court sided with California and upheld a law that required more humane treatment of pigs, USA Today reports. The law banned the sale of pork products from pigs born to sows that didn't have at least 24 square feet of space and the ability to stand up and turn around in their pens. It was upheld in a 5-4 decision. (More foie gras stories.)

Get the news faster.
Tap to install our app.
Install the Newser News app
in two easy steps:
1. Tap in your navigation bar.
2. Tap to Add to Home Screen.