No Animal Left Behind is back for 2023!
This is a critical year for farm animals. In October, the European Commission will present its draft proposal of the revised animal welfare legislation, which affects millions of sentient beings across the EU.
Currently, the legislation doesn’t go far enough to ensure their welfare, and as countless exposes and undercover investigations have revealed, Europe’s animals have continued to suffer in industrial farming systems due to loopholes and oversights in the laws that were written to protect them.
It’s been a very long time since the animal welfare legislation was addressed - so now, we have a real chance to change the fates of these innocent beings for the better. That’s why we’ve relaunched the No Animal Left Behind project, to shine a light on the species that most desperately need the EU’s support and ensure they’re better protected in the upcoming revision.
Stay tuned and receive updates on our work!
We kicked off the second phase of No Animal Left Behind on March 23, with this video expose which features several recent investigations conducted by our members all across Europe. It dives into some of the most pressing issues affecting farm animals today, and explains what needs to change to support their welfare:
The video was accompanied by an expose report, which you can download in English here.
Between now and October, we’ll be highlighting these problems and more across our channels with the help of our members, drawing attention to the horrors several species face in intensive farming systems and our recommendations for helping them.
Using the latest science and evidence to show why animal welfare should be of the highest concern to policymakers, we’ll aim to empower them to make bold revisions to the legislation where it matters most: helping Europe’s animals to leave their history of pain behind, and enter into much freer and more fulfilling futures.
Will you join our call to leave no animal behind?
If we are to make a strong impression on the European Commission this year - and show them that better animal welfare laws are what Europe’s farm animals and citizens want - we’ll need to make some noise!
Be a part of the movement on social media by using the #NoAnimalLeftBehind hashtag in your posts. We’ll be sharing loads of interesting content, updates from our members and more in the months leading to October, so keep your eyes on our feeds for ways to get involved. We’ve drafted a little something to introduce the topic to your Twitter followers below:
What has the No Animal Left Behind project achieved so far?
In 2021, around 200,000 supporters across the EU demanded better welfare laws for animals. Your voices encouraged the Commission to take animal welfare seriously, and set positive change in motion.
In the same year, we also published our comprehensive report demonstrating how current EU laws are failing animals, as well as a white paper outlining what we want to see in the new legislation. We’ll be campaigning for these recommendations to be adopted in the revision - watch this space.
Our Key Demands
The animal welfare legislation must do more than protect every farm animal from neglect and cruelty, as well as minimise their suffering. They should actively promote a positive state of health and wellbeing, too. Here are some of the welfare concerns we want the Commission to prioritise while revising their laws.
1 Good Health
Every animal should be healthy, fit and whole.
No animal should be deliberately mutilated: its tail or beak chopped short; its body so overstretched it cannot stand straight. But billions live in preventable pain every day, breathless, injured, diseased, in misery. Animals deserve to to feel strong and full of life, to want to run and swim and peck and play. It’s not enough to exist; they should thrive.
2 A Happy Life
Every animal should have the space to thrive.
No animal should be physically restricted, without natural light or fresh air, too hot or too cold, or living in filth. They deserve to move freely and safely and to rest in comfort. When animals have control over how and where they spend their time – building nests or sunbathing, exploring or snoozing, choosing their companion for the day, having shelter and shade from the elements – their wellbeing increases. Feeling safe from harm, and interested in life, and able to swim or run like the wind should be the least we offer them.
3 No Animal Live Transport
End live transport
Being herded into noisy cramped trucks and driven for hours, days, even weeks is an unnatural and highly stressful experience for farmed animals. Every welfare expert is opposed to it. Animals are taken from everything that is familiar to them, and forced to endure long periods without rest, food and water, and many arrive at their destination exhausted and injured. Our first demand is that the EU bans all long distance journeys for farmed animals, and introduces bespoke rules for pigs, cattle, sheep, rabbits, chickens etc to limit their suffering on all other unavoidable journeys.
4 Natural Behaviours
Every animal should be able to express themselves.
No animal should be prevented from showing natural behaviours, kept confined, without choice. Boredom and stress spill into frustration and aggression, and when there’s no escape, every day is miserable. Pigs and geese should be able to do what pigs and geese love to do… And given the chance to groom and bond with favourite pals, or to find a quiet safe spot, or to explore new toys and tools, individuals can express their personality too.
5 Good Nutrition
Every animal should enjoy nutritious food and clean water
No animal should be kept hungry, malnourished or thirsty. They deserve to enjoy nutritious, wholesome food and easy access to fresh clean water. Most would naturally spend many hours rooting, grazing, browsing, foraging and feeding. Encouraging them to express these behaviours, through thoughtful husbandry, is vital to their wellbeing. A scoop of concentrated, industrial feed delivered once or twice a day brings little but boredom and frustration and empty hours.
6 Positive mental experiences
Every animal deserves to enjoy life.
No animal is a machine, without feelings or curiosity or needs. But billions are treated as ‘units of production’ and squeezed and stacked together like batteries being charged. They should be cared for as the sentient, smart, pleasure-seeking creatures they truly are, and given every chance to enjoy their lives. They deserve living spaces that add pleasure and interest and choice to the everyday, that feed curious minds, and encourage connections and wellbeing.
7 Expanding the circle of compassion to include all species
Every animal deserves protection and care.
The more we discover about animals and their complex, intriguing lives, the more shocked we should be at how we have treated them in the past. And the more determined we should be to ensure they live a good life. Our laws need to do more than protect the welfare of all farmed animals. They should promote health, wellbeing and compassion. Because animals deserve no less. Let’s leave none behind.
Who else is with us?
“Each year, millions of animals are transported alive within the EU and to third countries. Journeys can last several days or even weeks and countless investigations have repeatedly uncovered serious breaches of the Council Regulation (EC) No 1/2005. This cannot go on.”
“Our animal welfare laws fail billions of farmed animals living in preventable pain every day. It is high time for the European Commission to commit to an ambitious review of the legislation.”
“No animal deserves to be confined and physically restricted. 1.4 million citizens across Europe have called on the EU to put an end on the use of cages in animal farming. It is time for the European Commission to take action.”
“Citizens’ calls to act on animal welfare have become louder and louder in this crucial time, the European Commission cannot ignore these calls any longer and needs to commit to an ambitious full-scale review of the animal welfare laws.”
“Countless investigations have shown over and over the serious failures and poor enforcement of the current legislation. The European Commission needs to make sure that the revised animal welfare laws do more than protect every animal from neglect and cruelty: they should also actively promote a positive state of health and wellbeing.”
“2021 offers a very important window of opportunity for animal welfare in the EU. The European Commission cannot miss this chance to offer better protection to the billions farmed animals suffering across Europe every day.”
"We live in a world where sensitive beings are cramped in small cages, without possibility to move, without access to natural light or fresh air and their offspring is ripped apart from them as soon as the children are born. We wouldn't do it to another human but we continue to treat non-human animals in that way. The horror of factory farming cannot last. We need a law which protects animal rights. Animals deserve no less."