Foie gras ban overturned; judge rules law unconstitutional

An Aug. 9, 2006 file photo shows Todd Stein, the executive chef at MK, a trendy downtown Chicago restaurant, slicing a portion of foie gras. (AP Photo/M. Spencer Green, File)

A U.S. District Court judge overturned the state's ban on the sale and production of foie gras, the fatty liver of geese and ducks.

The judge permanently blocked the state attorney general from enforcing the law, which first went into effect July 1, 2012, and ruled that the ban was unconstitutional because it interferes with an existing federal law that regulates poultry products.

The ban prohibited California farmers from force-feeding birds with a funnel-like tube that enlarges the birds' livers, which is how foie gras is made.

The ruling came in a lawsuit brought by foie gras farmers in Canada and New York and by Hermosa Beach restaurant Hot's Kitchen.

The Associated Press contributed to this report

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