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Thomas Keller, Christopher Kostow, And Over 100 Foie Gras-Supporting Chefs Join Coalition To Fight Ban

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As chef unrest builds leading up to the the July 1 ban of foie gras, the Golden Gate Restaurant Association has formed a new coalition in a last ditch repeal effort. C.H.E.F.S., the Coalition for Humane and Ethical Farming Standards, has drafted up a charter that will be delivered to legislative leaders today with the signatures of over 100 well-known chefs. Of course, the arguments for and against the process of raising foie gras rage on. The Chron has coverage and quotes from both sides. There is Coi chef-owner Daniel Patterson: "It's a stupid law. It's a big waste of time and a big waste of money." And some fighting words from the former state Senator John Burton, who wrote the ban in 2004, "They've had all this time to figure it out and come up with a more humane way...I'd like to sit all 100 of them down and have duck and goose fat - better yet, dry oatmeal- shoved down their throats over and over and over again."

As per a weekend press release, the full “Humane and Ethical Foie Gras Act” and the list of 100+ supporting chefs, follows. In a coup, Thomas Kellerwho recently said he would support the ban—has also joined the crusade.

California Charter for Hand Feeding of Ducks and Geese

· Audits: Each farm must follow a set of specific humane protocols, including every point addressed in this charter, and submit to regular inspections by independently certified animal welfare experts to ensure compliance.

· Hand feeding: Farmers must use industry optimum equipment to feed the ducks using methods that do not cause harm to the esophagus or beak. Periodic exams must confirm the safety of the procedures.

· Animal Health Care Professional: Farms will schedule regular visits by an Animal Health Care Professional to assess the general health and living conditions of the birds. This is to be incorporated as a protocol, and frequency is to be determined by USDA inspection results.

· USDA inspection: Each bird must be inspected for good health by a USDA approved officer at the time of slaughter.

· Caretakers: Must be properly trained and adequately supervised. They must be gentle and calm in their gestures and movement.

· Mobility: Birds are to be raised in an environment that helps build and maintain strength in their legs and overall good health.

· Optimization: Birds are to be hand-fed in a manner that is adapted to their age and size. Each bird will be checked prior to feeding to evaluate its capacity so that the amount of feed may be optimized as opposed to maximized.

· Living conditions: Birds will be kept in comfortable conditions to minimize stress and maximize comfort at each stage. Appropriate lighting will be provided. Birds will have continual access to clean water. All barns will be kept at suitable temperatures consistent with each area’s specific weather conditions.

· Cage Free: Beginning January 1, 2017, birds may not be housed or fed at any time in cages that restrict the bird’s ability to turn around freely, lie down, stand up, and fully extend its wings.

· Predators and pests: Appropriate measures must be implemented to keep predators, rodents and pests away from birds, and should include regular visits by professional pest control services.


Matthew Accarrino, SPQR, San Francisco
Peter Armellino, Plumed Horse, Saratoga
John Ash, John Ash and Co. Restaurant, Santa Rosa
Manuel Azevedo, La Sallette, Sonoma
Jeff Banker, Baker and Banks, San Francisco
Daniel Barron, Evolve Cuisine, San Diego
Michael Beck, The Valley Hunt Club, Pasadena
Ian Begg, Txoko, San Francisco
Mark Berkner, Taste, Plymouth
Jason Berthold, RN74, San Francisco
Jan Birmbaum, Epic Roasthouse, San Francisco
Chris Borges, Taste, San Francisco
Pajo Bruich, Lounge ON20, Sacramento
Sean Chaney, Hot’s Kitchen, Hermosa Beach
Cory Chen, Yan Can Asian Bistro, Santa Clara
Michael Chiarello, Bottega, Yountville
Michael Cimarusti, Providence, Los Angeles
Josiah Citrin, Melisse, Santa Monica
John Clark, Foreign Cinema, San Francisco
David Coleman, Michael on Naples, Long Beach
Chris Cosentino, Incanto, San Francisco
Dominique Crenn, Atelier Crenn, San Francisco
Dave Cruz, Ad Hoc, Yountville
Greg Daniels, Haven Gastropub, Orange
Gary Danko, Gary Danko, San Francisco
Traci Des Jardins, Jardiniere, San Francisco
Mark Dommen, One Market, San Francisco
Vinny Dotolo, Animal, Hollywood
Michael Dotson, Martins West, Redwood City
Lissa Doumani, Ame Restaurant, San Francisco
Didier Dutertre, Bistro Moulin, Monterey
Scott Ekstrom, Angele Restaurant, Napa
Joey Elentrio, Chez TJ, Mountain View
Elizabeth Falkner, Citizen Cake, San Francisco
David Feau, The Royce, Pasadena
Tyler Florence, Wayfare Tavern, San Francisco
Ken Frank, La Toque, Napa
Alain Giraud, Maison Giraud, Pacific Palisades
Mark Gold, Eva Restaurant, Los Angeles
Matthew Gordon, Urban Solace, San Diego
Molly Hawks, Hawks Restaurant, Granite Bay
Rory Herrman, Bouchon, Beverly Hills
Bruce Hill, Picco, San Francisco
Timothy Hollingsworth, The French Laundry, Yountville
Philippe Jeanty, Bistro Jeanty, Yountville
Victor Jimenez, The Cowboy Star, San Diego
Laurence Jossel, Nopa, San Francisco
Yuko Kaji, CHAYA Brasserie, San Francisco
Doug Keane, Cyrus, Healdsburg
Thomas Keller, The French Laundry, Napa
Adam Keough, The Absinthe Group, San Francisco
David Kinch, Manresa, Los Gatos
Christopher Kostow, The Restaurant at Meadowood, Saint Helena
Mourad Lahlou, Aziza, San Francisco
Cory Lee, Benu, San Francisco
Ludo Lefebvre, LudoBites, Los Angeles
Robbie Lewis, Bon Appetit Management Co., San Francisco
Emily Luchetti, Waterbar, San Francisco
Rafael Lunetta, JiRaffe, Santa Monica
Doug MacFarland, Ramekins, Sonoma
Michel Malecot, The French Gourmet, San Diego
Walter Manzke, Republique Restaurant, Los Angeles
Joey Miller, Joe’s Restaurant, Venice Beach
Michael Mina, Michael Mina Restaurant Group, San Francisco
Matthew Mullowney, La Toque, Napa
Patrick Mulvaney, Mulvaney’s BandL, Sacramento
Nancy Oakes, Boulevard, San Francisco
Pascal Olhats, Brasserie Pascal, Newport Beach
Ryan O’Melveney Wilson, Five Crowns and Side Door, Corona Del Mar
Norman Owens, Hot Box Grill, Sonoma
Ileah Paolinelli, Claudine, San Francisco
Robert Pascucci, Ariccia Italian Market, La Jolla
Roland Passot, La Folie, San Francisco
Cindy Pawlcyn, Mustards, Napa
Charles Phan, The Slanted Door, San Francisco
Tim Quaintance, Boulevard, San Francisco
Richard Reddington, Redd’s Restaurant, Napa
Xavier Salomon, The Ritz-Carlton, San Francisco
Otto Sanchez, The Ritz-Carlton, Half Moon Bay
Michael Sandoval, Bouchon, Yountville
Victor Scargle, Lucy at Bardessono, Yountville
Daniel Scherotter, Palio D’Asti, San Francisco
Randall Selland, Selland Family Restaurants, Sacramento
Jon Shook, Son of a Gun, Los Angeles
Josh Silvers, Petite Syrah, Santa Rosa
Hiro Sone, Terra, Napa
Joachim Splichal, Patina, Los Angeles
Staffan, Terje, Perbacco, San Francisco
Michael Thiemann, Ella Dining Room and Bar, Sacramento
Josh Thomsen, Meritage at the Claremont, Berkeley
Ken Tominaga, Hana Japanese, Rohnert Park
Michael Tusk, Quince Restaurant, San Francisco
Dustin Valette, Dry Creek Kitchen, Healdsburg
Stephane Voitzwinkler, Bertrand at Mister A’s, San Diego
Joanne Weir, Maestra de Cocina, Sausalito
Dakota Weiss, W Los Angeles, Los Angeles
Micha Wexler, Mezze Restaurant, Los Angeles
Andrew Wilson, Carneros Bistro, Sonoma
Matthew Woolf, Hotel Angeleno, Joie de Vivre, Los Angeles
Sang Yoon, Father’s Office, Los Angeles
Hoss Zare, Zare Fly Trap, San Francisco
Marc Zimmerman, Alexander’s, San Francisco
Noah Zonca, The Kitchen, Sacramento

· Foie gras chefs hungry for fight against ban [Chron]
· Chefs Weigh In: The California Foie Gras Ban [Eater National]
· All Foie Gras Coverage [~ESF~]
· Chef's Standards [Official Site]