Israel to ban force-feeding of geese

Jerusalem - Israel will ban the force-feeding of geese as of late January after parliamentary approval of a new law under heavy pressure from animal rights campaigners.

The law was passed on Monday despite government fears that it could ruin Israel's standing as one of the world's largest exporters of foie gras, a pate made from goose liver.

In August 2003, the supreme court ordered a blanket ban on force-feeding but granted producers of foie gras a year-and-a-half delay.

A subsequent request from the agriculture ministry for an additional two-month grace period was turned down by MPs.

Agriculture ministry director general, Yossi Ishay, has said the law will ruin an important sector of Israeli agriculture.

The Jewish state is the world's fourth largest exporter of foie gras Nan industry worth $16,5-million (about R100-million) a year which employs 500 people in Israel. - Sapa-AFP

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