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Parliamentary questions
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5 January 2015
Question for written answer E-000034-15
to the Commission
Rule 130
Mark Demesmaeker (ECR)

 Subject:  Foie gras
 Answer in writing 

The production and consumption of foie gras remains a controversial issue, and the past year has been no exception. In particular, many citizens are concerned by the use of force-feeding. Producers and consumers must be given the choice of foie gras that has been produced with or without force-feeding.

1. According to Article 1(3) of Regulation (EC) No 543/2008, the net weight of a duck liver for foie gras must be at least 300 grams and a goose liver 400 grams. Prior to 2008 this was 250 and 300 grams respectively. The practical outcome is that producers still rely on force‐feeding. Is the Commission considering relaxing these minimum requirements so that lighter but more animal-friendly liver can qualify as foie gras? If so, when? If not, why not?

2. Question E-010605/2012 raised the issue of a possible incompatibility between the definition of foie gras in Regulation (EC) No 543/2008 and in French national law. In his answer, Commissioner Borg ordered an assessment to be carried out. What was the result of this assessment, and what measures are being taken as a result?

3. How do things stand regarding research into alternative feeding methods, as recommended by the Council of Europe, and what is the EU's role in this?

Original language of question: NL 
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