Pate is a product generally made from liver and is not recommended during pregnancy because there is an increased risk of infection with listeria, listeriosis, or other infections.
Pâté or Pate is French for "pie". Pate is traditionally a mixture of ground meat from beef, seafood, pork, liver, ham, poultry, white game, chichen, duck, goose, and vegetables and fat minced into a spreadable paste. Common additions to pate include vegetables, herbs, spices, and either wine or cognac, armagnac or brandy. Pâté can be served either hot or cold, but it is considered to develop its fullest flavor after a few days of chilling.
Pâté may be baked in a crust as pie or loaf, or baked in a terrine (or other mold). Traditionally, a forcemeat mixture cooked and served in a terrine is also called a terrine. The most famous pâté is probably pâté de foie gras, made from the fattened livers of geese.
Foie gras entier is fattened goose liver cooked and sliced, not made into pâté. Pâté en croûte is baked with the insertion of "chimneys" on top: small tubes or funnels that allow steam to escape, thus keeping the pastry crust from turning damp or soggy.
In the Netherlands, Finland, Germany, Hungary, Sweden, and Austria, some liver pâtés are shaped as a soft, often spreadable sausage, called leverworst (Dutch), májpástétom/májkrém (Hungarian), or Leberwurst (German). In the United Statesthese are sometimes called "liverwurst" (mixing English and German), or braunschweiger. Some liverwursts can be sliced.
There is an increased risk of pate transmitting infectious diseases like listeriosis. There are dozens of medical publications reporting on the association between eating pate and becoming infected with listeriosis. Listeriosis is an infectious disease which can specifically affect pregnant women and their fetuses leading to miscarriages and stillbirths. Pregnant women are therefore advised to not eat pate or other similar products during pregnancy.