What you can do
- Be careful when buying duck and goose meat from France, Spain, Bulgaria and Hungary because those countries export meat from force fed animals.
- Stay away from any ducks or geese without their viscera! If there is no liver, the animal was probably force fed.
- Check the EEC-number on the product. With this number you are able to check if the meat comes from a country where force feeding is allowed.
- You should avoid these companies (see info list below)
- Steer clear of goose liver pâté, terrines and similar products made by duck-liver. Even products from countries where it is illegal to force feed animals e.g. Germany or Austria could contain Foie Gras or meat from force fed birds.
- Pay attention at farmers markets, where loose, fresh poultry from force feeding is sold. Ask explicitly for the origin of the meat. If in any doubt, don’t buy it.
- Please keep in mind, that even the conventional husbandry of ducks and geese takes place under terms, which do not conform to real standards of animal welfare. How about a vegetarian alternative this Christmas or at least organic meat?
Shopping with your eyes open! Check EEC numbers
All food products of animal origin are coded by an EEC-number. With the aid of this number the consumer can check where the product was made and who processed it.
The EEC-number contains the country code, (e.g. HU = Hungary, F = France, BE = Belgium) and the number of the company. Sometimes the following letters are marked - EG, EEC or EWG - showing that the product is made in the European Economic Community.
Mostly you can find the EEC-number beside the best before date. It consists of an oval with numbers and letters. Above you can see an example for meat from Hungary ("HU-110-EK"). HU denominates the land the meat comes from – in our case, from Hungary. 110 is the company, in our case Hungerit, a ‘fatty liver’ producer and sloughterhouse. EK is for a cold store house.
The French EEC-numbers are different to other country’s numbers. The information is encoded as a number. In our example “F” is for the country France. The first number (67) is for the Départment. The second number (447) is for the commune from which the meat comes. The last number (05) is for the producing company in the commune. In our example it is for the company Castaing, a big ‘fatty liver’ producer. Here, CEE is also the symbol for the European Economic Community.
The Info List Foie-Gras Industry
FOUR PAWS has compiled a list of EEC numbers that denote the producers of ‘fatty livers.’ On the left hand side of the list you can find the EEC-numbers. They show the biggest companies of Hungarian and French fatty-liver production and therefore the main profiteers of this animal abuse. Compare this number with the numbers on your supermarket meat. If they are identical don`t buy the meat. Speak to the manager and employees. Tell them that the meat could be a product from the cruel trade in force-feeding and request that it be removed.
You can download and print the ‘Info List’ below , to make your shopping easier.
The Information List Foie-Gras Industry