Wine industry dragged into foie gras fight

California's ban on foie gras has outraged Philippe Martin, president of the general council in France's Gers region. In retaliation, Martin has called on all French restaurants to boycott California wine.

From the San Francisco Chronicle:

Foes of California's ban on foie gras have a new ally abroad: a politician in southern France who is urging a boycott of California wines in response.

The state ban on the sale and production of the French-born delicacy, a fatty goose or duck liver made by force-feeding the animals, took effect July 1. Most restaurants in the state have removed the item from their menus, though some have refused.

The move has outraged Philippe Martin, president of the general council in the Gers region, near the Pyrenees mountains.

"I call on all the restaurants in France that sell Californian wine to stop doing so in a show of solidarity for our foie gras makers and, more broadly, for all food makers," said Martin.

California produced 90 percent of the $1.4 billion in U.S. wine exports in 2011, according to the Wine Institute in San Francisco. Little is exported to France, said Terry Hall, a spokesman for Napa Valley Vintners of St. Helena, which represents 430 wineries.

For more, see: California wine caught in foie gras row

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