Former Miss Uk Launches PETA ‘Force-Feeding’ Ad Campaign Outside Selfridges

For Immediate Release:
30 April 2009

Sam Glover 020 7357 9229, ext 229; [email protected]

London – Former Miss UK Brooke Johnston joined an elegantly dressed woman – who was  force-fed by a ‘waiter’ to launch an ad campaign and simulate the agony of foie gras production – at a dinner table set up on the pavement outside Selfridges in London today on the eve of the store’s centenary celebrations. Johnston is upset about the suffering that birds who are killed to make foie gras endure, and she is urging Selfridges to drop the cruelly produced tinned food. Birds’ livers become painfully engorged during foie gras production as a result of the cruel force-feeding process. A huge ad that includes a photo of Johnston being force-fed next to the message “Selfridges: Force-feeding is Cruel” is being displayed on a van, which will drive around Selfridges all day. PETA plans to tour the UK throughout the summer in vans bearing large versions of the ad.

To create foie gras (French for “fat liver”), up to 2 kilograms of a grain, maize and fat mash are pumped into the stomachs of geese and ducks through a pipe two or three times a day. (This is roughly the equivalent of forcing 20 kilograms of pasta down a human throat each day.) As the birds’ livers expand to up to 10 times their normal size, the animals become sick, and many become immobile. The pipes sometimes puncture the birds’ throats – which causes them to bleed to death – and their internal organs sometimes rupture. Death rates during force-feeding are as much as 1,000 to 2,000 per cent greater than those of birds raised for other purposes.

Polls show that nearly two-thirds of Britons believe that foie gras sales should be banned. Sir John Gielgud was the first famous voice behind PETA’s campaign against foie gras. More recently, Sir Roger Moore narrated this graphic video that shows exactly how cruel foie gras production is. Sir Roger Moore, Phil Collins and The Duke and Duchess of Hamilton are all boycotting Selfridges until the company stops selling foie gras. Prince Charles has banned foie gras from Royal menus.

“I hope that my involvement with PETA’s campaign helps Selfridges see that ducks and geese who are force-fed to produce foie gras have bones, flesh and feelings just like me”, says Johnston. “Just like me, they suffer and feel pain. I won’t be shopping at Selfridges until they stop selling foie gras.”

A copy of Johnston’s ad for PETA is available upon request. For more information, please visit