I WAS very upset to see that the Bolton Wanderers' hotel (De Vere Whites) plans to serve foie gras as part of its "Gourmet Evening" menu.

Foie gras is perceived as an expensive delicacy, but if customers knew how it was produced, they would be appalled.

This cruel practice causes the birds immense suffering. Foie gras is the grossly enlarged liver of a duck or goose and is essentially a disease, marketed as a delicacy. During the last few weeks of a bird's life it is kept in a cage unable to move and it is then force-fed. Workers cram long metal pipes down its throat and pump up to 7lbs of food per day into its stomach, the equivalent of about 16lbs of spaghetti in a human being.

This continues until the bird's liver becomes painfully diseased and up to 12 times its normal size. These force-fed birds sometimes literally burst open because of this process, and many choke to death on their own vomit. They often can't walk, stand or breathe. Only male ducks are used for foie gras because they produce larger livers. Female baby birds are drowned, beaten, or crushed to death.

Foie gras violates the principles of the European Convention for the protection of animals kept for farming purposes. These farms are so cruel that they have been banned in the UK and many other European countries. The public are increasingly aware of the cruelty involved in the production of foie gras and many restaurants are now removing foie gras from their menus.

Let's make Bolton a healthier place, not one involved in horrendous cruelty.

Alwynne Cartmell, Bolton Green Party