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Minty O'Callaghan, left, and Kathy Kuwaye enjoy a carrot soup topped with a foie gras cream at Sent Sovi Friday, May 11, 2012 in Saratoga, Calif. This is not a good time to be a duck in California. As a July 1 deadline looms for foie gras nears, renegade chefs across the state are loading their menus with the fatty duck liver and even holding secret dinners to avoid protesters, who say that force-feeding ducks is cruel. (AP Photo/Marcio Jose Sanchez)

Foie gras frenzy grows as ban nears

This is not a good time to be a duck in California, though better times lie just ahead. Demand for the delicacy created by force-feeding ducks through funnel-like tubes has never been higher as diners sate their palates with a product that soon will be banned for production and sale in the Golden State as of July 1.