National Campaign Raises Factory Farm Issue
with Whole Foods
Two Regions pull factory farmed duck meat from Maple Leaf Farms in response
to national campaign
Viva!USA is sponsoring a nationwide series
of events to convince Whole Foods to drop duck meat from its over 100
stores. In conjunction with groups around the country, Viva! will hold
demonstrations and leafleting events from now until mid-February at Whole
Foods stores (including those operating under the names Fresh Fields &
Bread & Circus) in such major cities as Atlanta, Dallas, San Francisco,
Seattle, and Washington, DC.
Viva! has been informed by both the Midwest and MidAtlantic Whole
Foods that they will no longer carry duck meat by Maple Leaf Farms, one
of the main companies investigated by Viva! The announcement from the
Mid Atlantic region includes D’Artagnan and International Gourmet.
However, some Whole Foods still carry duck meat from Maple Leaf Farms
and also Grimaud Farms of California - another company investigated by
Viva! Earth Fare, a health food chain with five stores in North &
South Carolina, pulled duck meat from Grimaud Farms after seeing Viva!’s
“We felt we were doing Whole Foods a service by informing them of
the cruel practices of these companies,” said lauren Ornelas, US Campaigns
Director, “but since some regions of Whole Foods are still carrying Maple
Leaf Farms and Grimaud Farms, we feel we have to take our message to their
Whole Foods maintains an image of concern for the environment and
for the welfare of animals killed for food, however, many Whole Foods
continue to sell duck meat from factory farms.
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-bililng is done to prevent feather
pulling - a behavior caused by the stressful environment. In the US, thousands
of ducks are boiled alive in the slaughterhouse!
Video footage of duck units; full report; media briefing and photos,
are available from Viva! or on