For more information contact:
lauren Ornelas 404/315-8881
April 6, 2001
Activists Spring Into
Action for Ducks
Viva! Victory: Whole Foods Market Drops Maple Leaf
Viva!USA is sponsoring a nationwide series of events to persuade Whole
Foods and Trader Joe’s markets to drop the sale of duck meat. In conjunction
with groups around the country, Viva! will hold demonstrations and leafleting
events from April 7 - 14, in cities such as Austin, Boston, Chicago, Dallas,
and San Francisco.
Viva! launched its campaign against duck meat in September
of this year with the help of Paul McCartney and actress
Hayley Mills after investigating Maple Leaf Farms and
Grimaud Farms of California.
Whole Foods has dropped duck meat sold by Maple Leaf Farms
in all of their stores but Trader Joe’s continues to carry
“It is tragically ironic that stores who have built a niche
market on ‘healthy, socially-conscious’ specialty foods,
cannot live up to an image that has put them where they are
today,” said lauren Ornelas, U.S. Campaigns Director, Viva!
According to Viva!, Whole Foods and Trader Joe’s are
currently selling duck meat from Grimaud Farms where some of
the ducks are not allowed access to the outdoors, fresh air,
natural light, free access to swimming water and where the
ducks have the tips of their bills cuts off. Hundreds of
birds are kept in filthy sheds.
Viva!’s response to Whole Foods claims can be seen at:
Viva! investigated both Grimaud and Maple Leaf Farms and
found that the ducks are forced to live in crowded
conditions, indoors, without enough water to immerse their
heads. Most farms offer ducks water only in the form of
nipple drinkers (a pipe with holes where water drops out).
Without an adequate amount of water, these aquatic birds
find it difficult to keep warm and may also develop eye
problems that can result in blindness. Both companies
practice de-billing. De-billing is done to prevent feather
pulling - a behavior caused by the stressful environment. In
the US, thousands of ducks are boiled alive in the
Video footage of duck units; full report; media briefing and
photos, are available from Viva! or on our website at