Luxury Hotel Ditches Foie Gras For Ethical Reasons

The decision follows years of campaigning by vegan charity Viva!
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Foie gras production causes immense suffering (Photo: Viva!)

Foie gras production causes immense suffering (Photo: Viva!)

A luxury hotel in Bath has ditched foie gras following years of campaigning by vegan charity Viva!.

In 2011, Viva! led a successful campaign in partnership with Bath & North East Somerset Council to ban the sale of foie-gras in all council-registered food outlets across the district. 

The Gainsborough Bath Spa has now adopted this policy, dropping the controversial food from its menu.

Foie gras

Foie gras is unpopular because of its inhumane method of production. Geese and ducks are force-fed, making their livers swell up to 10 times their normal size.

According to Viva!, this impairs function, restricts blood flow and makes it difficult for the birds to breathe. 

The production of foie-gras has been prohibited in multiple countries – including the Czech Republic, Denmark, Finland, Germany, Italy, Luxembourg, Norway, Poland, Turkey and the UK, but retailers can still import it from France, where around 75 percent of the world's foie-gras is produced.

'Thrilled'

"Our successful campaign to ban the sale of foie-gras at food outlets in Bath, supported by Councillor Paul Crossley, was very well received by local restaurants and the public. And so we are thrilled that The Gainsborough – a hotel which claims to set the gold standard for luxury hotels – has extended this ban to their menu," Viva! Campaigns Manager, Lex Rigby, said in a statement sent to Plant Based News.

"Given the production of foie-gras is banned in the UK due to the inhumane practice of force-feeding, the idea that foie-gras is a luxurious item is a sick joke. We hope this commitment will set a precedence for other hotels, not just in Bath but across the UK. 

"This victory could not have happened without the ongoing commitment and vigilance from Bath & North East Somerset Council and we are proud to work with them on this issue. There is still more work to be done until this cruel industry comes to an end. This is a timely reminder to all caterers in Bath and we hope to see a wider commitment from the hospitality sector."

Councillor Dine Romero, Bath & North East Somerset council leader, added: "We very much welcome The Gainsborough's sensible decision to remove foie-gras from their menu. The council simply cannot support the sale of food that involves such cruelty in its production."