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London Activists Stage Provocative Disruptions Inside Restaurant that Serves Foie Gras

May 22, 2015 by Leave a Comment

The News

If you own a restaurant in London, you’d better think twice before serving foie gras. That is because London Vegan Actions, an animals rights group that “turns actions into victories,” could very well disrupt your diners – over and over – until you take it off the menu.

Disruptions inside of restaurants have triggered much debate within the animal rights community. Some activists say that loud disruptions alienate the target audiences; others argue that they prompt customers to consider what – or who – they are eating and that they trigger exasperated restaurants to stop serving the most controversial of foods.

Security guard expels one of the activists who staged disruption inside of Sketch

Security guard expels an animal rights activist who staged a disruption inside of Sketch, a restaurant in London that sells foie gras

After four weeks of disruptions, the restaurant Sketch, the group’s current target, continues to sell foie gras, and London Vegan Actions is showing no signs of backing down. After all, they argue, “you cannot even legally produce foie gras in the U.K. due to the cruelty, which is why 16 countries have banned its production.” Protests are planned on May 22nd and May 23rd.

Sketch restaurant is the target of animal rights protests because it sells foie gras

Sketch restaurant is the target of animal rights protests because it sells foie gras (photo: Karen Robinson, The Guardian)

Activists show video of foie gras production inside restaurant

Activists have displayed video of foie gras production inside of Sketch

A van filled with police officers arrives at at foie gras protest at Sketch restaurant in London

A van filled with police officers arrives at at foie gras protest at Sketch

In late April, Alexis Gauthier, the chef and owner of Gauthier restaurant, decided to take foie gras off of his menu after London Vegan Actions staged three disruptive protests.

Alexis Gauthier, the chef owner of Gauthier Restaurant in London, is dragged back into restaurant as he asks protesters if they are wearing leather shoes.

An angry customer at Gauthier accuses protesters of wearing leather shoes as his dining companion attempts to drag him into the restaurant

Foie gras, which is often described by activists as a “delicacy of despair,”  is produced by force feeding ducks and geese through metal pipes until their livers become diseased, swelling up to ten times their normal size. The pipes are inserted 12″ down their esophaguses three times daily in the weeks leading up to slaughter.

Gavage, force feeding

Gavage, the process by which the birds’ livers are fattened, is French for force feeding.

In 2013, the U.S.-based advocacy group Mercy For Animals used hidden cameras at the nation’s largest producer to document the abuse inherent in foie gras production:

London Vegan Actions isn’t the only group in the U.K. advocating on behalf of battered ducks and geese. Hertfordshire Animal Rights stopped the sale of foie gras at seven U.K. restaurants in 2014.

Your Turn

Please ask Sketch to take foie gras off the menu by sending an email to, tweeting or posting a message on the restaurant’s Facebook page.


Comments via Facebook Comments

  1. Barbara Bailey says:

    We must ensure that farm animals and feather live a gud life, and wen it comes to end as quick and painless as possible__ in an ideal world we wuldn eat animals/birds_ mayb one day..

  2. maureen says:

    It all needs to stop, every bit of it. Beautiful animals suffering so much. It just needs to stop.

  3. Sue Morris says:


  4. Christine says:


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