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Dan Barber on The Future of Food: Fois Gras

The fois gras debate has ramped up in Seattle recently as local fundamentalist crazies who won't listen to reason NARN began protesting Lark, a restaurant in my neighborhood that serves fois. It's been discussed ad nauseum on the Slog, but Kate from Accidental Hedonist provides the most level-headed voice in the crowd. Fois isn't as cruel to geese as NARN or other animal rights activists may lead you to believe, despite the kneejerk reaction you may have to the term "force-feeding".

The quiet, contemplative Dan Barber gave a highly informative and compelling lecture at TED concerning the issue of fois gras and sustainability. If there's one ingredient that seems completely contradictory to the concept of sustainable food, it's fois gras. Dan tells us about a farmer in Spain he met who is doing everything so right, even nature itself seems to agree with him. His geese are so well-treated that the wild geese in the area actually come to stay, mate and feed. There's no force-feeding going on, it's just happy geese gladly getting fat.

I absolutely adore fois gras and while it is a bit too expensive for me to order on a regular basis, I'll still treat myself every now and again. There's so much wrong with the way we produce our food these days, but I think attacking fois gras is misguided at best. Dan shows us that with a bit of thoughtfulness and conscience, we can overcome these moral issues while producing the best quality product possible.

[link via Still Life Cafe]


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