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Last Updated: Thursday, 4 October 2007, 20:56 GMT 21:56 UK
Councillors approve foie gras ban
Campaigners outside the council meeting
Foie gras is the product of torture, say protesters
Councillors in York have voted almost unanimously in favour of opposing the sale of foie gras.

The motion, tabled by councillor Paul Blanchard, said the use of livers from force-fed ducks is "a cruel practice".

It is now banned from council premises. The council is to write to hotels and restaurants in the city to inform them of its opinion of the French delicacy.

York will become the first city in the UK to call for a nationwide ban on the sale of foie gras on cruelty grounds.

Foie gras is produced by force-feeding ducks and geese until their livers swell to six to 10 times their normal size.

Pneumatic pumps are used to force quantities of food into the birds, which animal welfare groups claim is cruel.

Animal rights campaigners demonstrated outside the city's full council meeting ahead of the vote on Thursday night.

Chicago 'brave'

Mr Blanchard, a Labour councillor, originally wanted York to emulate Chicago, by passing a total ban on the sale of foie gras in the city, but legal advice to the council said that was not possible.

The alternative motion stated: "This council believes that this intolerably cruel and painful practice is unnecessary and should end.

"The city of Chicago, USA, has shown tremendous compassionate leadership in their brave decision to ban foie gras in its shops and restaurants.

"The torture of small innocent animals should not be a matter of personal dietary choice."

The Liberal Democrat-led council's chief executive will now write to Lord Rooker, the minister for sustainable food and farming and animal health, stating the authority's concern over the sale of foie gras in the UK.

He will also request a review of central government policies on animal welfare issues.

SEE ALSO
Foie gras banned in Chicago
23 Aug 06 |  Americas
McCartney calls for foie gras ban
24 Sep 04 |  Entertainment

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