Steven Berkoff Takes Aim At Fortnum & Mason In Protest Against Sales Of Foie Gras

For Immediate Release:
10 February 2011

Sandra Smiley +44 (0)207 357 9229, ext 229; [email protected]

London – Wielding a menacing-looking pipe like the kind used to force-feed birds, renowned actor, writer and director Steven Berkoff posed for photographs today outside Fortnum & Mason in order to show the public the cruelty inherent in foie gras production. Berkoff, who played villain General Orlov opposite Sir Roger Moore in the 1983 film Octopussy, joins his Bond nemesis, Moore, in efforts to persuade Fortnum & Mason to follow the lead of Harvey Nichols and Selfridges and end its sales of foie gras.

“The methods by which foie gras is produced are absolutely villainous, so it’s little wonder the vast majority of the British public want foie gras sales banned”, says Berkoff. “It’s time Fortnum & Mason joined other upmarket retailers and stopped selling a product that causes birds agonising pain and death.”

Berkoff, who is currently co-starring alongside Johnny Depp in The Tourist, took time out to team up with PETA in protest of Fortnum & Mason’s shameful sales of a product that the government has deemed too cruel to produce in the UK. The action comes on the eve of a meeting between PETA representatives and Fortnum & Mason management about the department store’s continued sale of foie gras.

To create foie gras – French for “fatty liver” – up to two kilograms of mash are pumped into the stomachs of ducks and geese through a pipe two or three times a day. Birds used in foie gras production live in crowded and filthy conditions, and they often become severely depressed, stop grooming themselves and sit shaking in fear and pain as they await the next assault.

Berkoff joins a host of other celebrities in the fight against foie gras. Kate Winslet narrated PETA’s graphic video about foie gras production, and Sir Roger Moore recently placed an ad in London’s busy Piccadilly Circus Underground Station urging Fortnum & Mason to stop selling foie gras. Tamara Ecclestone has written to all Formula 1 teams and sponsors asking that they pledge never to serve foie gras at their events, and Joanna Lumley also spoke out against the vile product in a recent interview with PETA US Vice President Dan Mathews. The Brit Awards removed foie gras from its menu after complaints from both PETA and singer Leona Lewis, and Prince Charles has banned foie gras from the menu at his Royal residence.

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