Avian flu forces French restaurants to change menu (with less foie gras)

The poultry crisis is forcing major restaurants in France to remove foie gras from the menu or to serve only small portions. “We’ve had less foie gras for a month, and none at all this week,” the owner and chef of 1862 told CNN over the weekend.

The starred restaurant in the southwest of France no longer receives regular deliveries and therefore turns to local producers. In the meantime, the chef is working on alternative dishes to stock up on goose and duck livers. “2022 will be the year with more vegetable dishes and less meat,” he told CNN.

old dish

Franco-Dutch chef Alain Caron also learns from his fellow Frenchmen that foie gras is barely available. “A famous butcher in Paris told me recently that it’s a tragedy: it’s almost impossible to find. And the people who order or buy foie gras, they make a lot less of it. They are afraid, because of the bird flu.

According to Caron, the fact that the delicacy is still popular in France, despite the controversial production method, is partly because the dish is centuries old. “Farmers in the southwest of France used to make foie gras to earn some money. They gave the geese extra food. It wasn’t a good way of course, but it wasn’t done mechanically like it is now. The quality of the geese was very good.