Faced with the shortage of duck, Auscitain restaurateurs decided to remove duck breast and foie gras from their menus. They want to remain in solidarity with the producers, even if it means disappointing their customers.
The difficulties of duck producers arrive on the tables of restaurateurs. The upsurge in avian flu is causing a shortage of raw materials, and both duck breast and foie gras are in danger of disappearing from the menus.
This is already the case at the Lou Troket bar, a few steps from the Sainte-Marie d’Auch cathedral. “We don’t have duck, and that’s what we sold the most last year,” regrets Paco, the manager of the establishment. Hit hard by recruitment difficulties and inflation, the bar decided to close its kitchen and simplify its offer. “We work in a short circuit with sausages, pâtés, puddings with local producers, and we put the product directly on the table. The slogan: direct from the producer to your table! »
The rationed raw material
On the Place de la Liberation, the Darole always displays gizzard and duck breast on its slate. “When I can get some, I offer some, as soon as I can’t get local, I abstain. The summer menu is currently being printed, and it is indicated according to availability, explains Daniel Cabanel, the new boss of the brewery who faces the town hall. We are rationed, and I fear that we will have a passage of one or two months where we will not be able to have any more. It’s very complicated. »
For his part, Régis Cazaux stopped serving duck breast almost two months ago, but still offers foie gras to Jeff sends wood. “We still had a few supply opportunities in the department. So we continue with foie gras until our local supply possibilities cease, because the idea for us is to stay within a perimeter that does not exceed 30 to 40 km. »
Gers restaurants refuse to import duck
The establishments could obtain supplies elsewhere, but all the restaurateurs questioned refuse to offer products that are not local. “At home, there is no Bulgarian duck, insists Daniel Cabanel. Either I make local duck, or I don’t have any. As a matter of principle, I work with local actors, or at least French ones. My meat comes no further than Aveyron. »
It is for them a question of solidarity with the producers. “We think of the breeders. They are our partners all year round, remarks Régis Cazaux. My cousin is a producer, I’ve seen the evolution for years and it hasn’t stopped getting more complicated. Today’s crisis brings additional concern about the future of small farms. »
It will then be necessary to educate customers, and in particular tourists. “It will be easier because the phenomenon is known, we are not at our first epizootic of avian flu, estimates Régis Cazaux. People are inclined to understand. »
But this remains a new blow for restaurateurs as the summer holidays approach, they who are already facing recruitment difficulties.