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Foie Gras? Loopholes in the law? [moved from San Diego board]

  • Dagney Jun 21, 2012 09:05 PM
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So....apparently it's only illegal to sell it. Does that mean we can still get it "free" with other menu items that will cost about the same as a foie gras dish? This law is such bs. Not to get off topic, but I am so over this tell-me-what-to-eat nonsense. If anyone needs me I'll be in the kitchen with some TRANS FATS.

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  1. There are a number of possibilities how foie gras will be also available in restaurants in the future including the "free" version. Just google it and you will find some suggestions how to work around the law

    1. In Chicago it popped up as a free item pretty quickly.

      1. As the clock strikes Midnight on June 30th, many restaurants on the "Left Coast," are working with "foie gras" special meals.

        I have this feeling, that anyone, who wishes foie gras will be killed, though the same folk will never recommend that for serial murderers. Same for large soft drinks in NYC?

        Hunt

        1. I'm not a legislator or lawyer, but I believe the backers of this piece of legislation foresaw people trying to use loopholes, so it's worded more generally so as to prohibit the SERVING of the liver of any bird which is overfed purposefully so as to increase its liver size.

          The word "serving" includes free portions.

          8 Replies
          1. re: J.L.

            What if there was a buffet table of foie gras and it was "self-serve"?

            In all seriousness, the law will not be enforced in CA -- either by law enforcement for PETA-type organizations.

            Plus, it is only illegal to sell foie gras produced in CA -- not the foie imported from out-of-state, and it is certainly not illegal to possess such imported foie.

            1. re: ipsedixit

              What, there will be no "Bird Liver Police" force?!

              Envisioning Eliot Ness deputizing a whole new breed of gastronomic cops, trained to bust foie gras speakeasies all over our fair metropolis...

              1. re: J.L.

                Look for a sketch on Saturday Night Live at some point -- I am sure it will happen.

                1. re: Tripeler

                  Was thinking the same thing -- a sketch about foie narcs by some Bay Area-based comedy troupe. They confiscate the "goods" but back in the squad car have a George Forman grill hot-wired into the cigarette lighter for cooking and chilled Sauternes in the cooler.

                  1. re: maria lorraine

                    Hey, in SF, a fine cigar is evil and is reason to have one banished to the "outer regions," but if you are toking a doobie, regardless of what your witch doctor has prescribed, you are OK.

                    Nah, though I have to be in that "odd city by the bay," I just pay zero attention, and just dine elsewhere on this globe. Such is life.

                    Hunt

                    1. re: Bill Hunt

                      who thinks a fine cigar is evil? i know people who smoke 'em here, and they co-exist just fine with the pot-smokers.

                      and you'd have to pay some amount of attention to know that there is a ban here - and um, not just here, but in all of CA.

              2. re: ipsedixit

                I asked Hudson Valley a short while back if they would ship their stuff to private customers in California and they said they would not but are working on it. They filed suit (with two others) in CA immediately after the ban went into effect. (I believe you would have read that other thread as you posted there after your post here. This is for others reading this thread.) (http://chowhound.chow.com/topics/8564...)

              3. re: J.L.

                where is the word "serving"?

                http://leginfo.legislature.ca.gov/fac...

              4. Well, we made many of the "pre-foie gras" events, but missed many too.

                I just dine elsewhere, and do not look back.

                Sorry that some of my favorite chefs in the CA-area cannot legally serve it, but such is life.

                I only have to deal with it, about 1 - 4x per month, but luckily get to travel to other environs.

                Hunt

                1. Here we go!!!

                  I'm not a lawyer but the law (linked above) does say that the product may not be sold in California. So this could turn on where 'title' to the foie gras changes hands. A restaurant can't legally buy it in California, but can they buy it out of state and serve it within California?

                  Some lawyers are going to have fun with this.

                  6 Replies
                  1. re: Midlife

                    The first fun argument that comes to mind is what technically constitutes the act of "serving." Could a server carry a plate of foie gras to a table on a tray, set the tray on a stand, and then leave? Allowing the guest to pick up the plate on his/her own?

                    This whole thing is so annoying and just smacks of overt government control. Who is going to enforce this law? I work in law enforcement and I can tell you we will have NOTHING to do with this petty bs.

                    1. re: Dagney

                      Well............ the law says nothing at all about "serving"............. just SELLING. I doubt that serving will find a home in the legal playground, but lawyers will be lawyers, so maybe.

                      1. re: Dagney

                        <<Who is going to enforce this law?>>

                        I would anticipate that CA has hired a bunch of IRS agents, on their "off time," to patrol every restaurant, to enforce the law. I would also imagine that CA will do a Web site, encouraging everyone to "turn in any restaurant, or patron, which/who does not adhere to our edict... " Hey, that worked well for Adolph Hitler, only 80 years ago.

                        I will just not worry, on my once to twice monthly SF trips. I will get my "fix" elsewhere.

                        Hunt

                        1. re: Bill Hunt

                          It's already well known and settled that this law is not going to be enforced. By anyone.

                          1. re: Bill Hunt

                            Wow, I didn't realize the state coffers overfloweth so...

                            1. re: J.L.

                              um yeah, one hopes Mr. Hunt is being "funny". no such actions are foreseen by anyone here.

                      2. "25982.A product may not be SOLD in California if it is the result of force feeding a bird for the purpose of enlarging the bird’s liver beyond normal size."

                        Give it away for free. Simple answer within the law.

                        4 Replies
                        1. re: PotatoHouse

                          It comes free with and 30$ order of Brioche toast and Rhubarb Gastric !

                          1. re: chefj

                            In all seriousness, I am wondering if this is the way the issue will be handles by restaurants.

                            1. re: Dagney

                              I sure hope so. I think that was what was happening in Chitown.

                              1. re: chefj

                                The Chitown revolt was dazzling.