Animal-rights protesters typically focus on the alleged cruelty inherent to the force-feeding technique know as gavage, which some argue is not cruelty and moreover necessary to produce the ultrafatty duck and goose livers known as foie gras. But Edward Sousa of Pateria de Sousa in Extremadura, Spain, presides over a flock of free-roaming birds, who eat when they feel like it and never have tubes jammed down their throats. The company has been using the same methods for about 200 years, and because Sousa's geese are free-roaming and are never force-fed, the placid man who considers it essential to "talk" to his geese is often considered an "ethical" producer of foie. For their latest Perennial Plate, 2013 James Beard Award winners Daniel Klein and Mirra Fine visit the farm and find out exactly what all the geese have been eating.
Episode 120: A Spanish Roadtrip [Perennial Plate]