In the past few days, following the UK Referendum result to leave the EU, we have witnessed an extraordinary chain of events including political leaders falling on their sword, jitters in the financial markets and widespread confusion over what comes next.
As a charity, Compassion in World Farming has remained neutral throughout the debate.
However, we take a keen interest in developments, watching intently for new threats or opportunities to the welfare of farm animals in Britain, Europe and beyond.
In a post-Brexit world, we will continue to be a strong voice for farm animals in Britain.
The next steps for the British government are of course still to be determined. However, through our network of passionate UK supporters, Compassion is ideally placed to seize every opportunity to make further gains for British farm animals (as well as fighting any potential back-sliding on existing welfare rules).
We will also encourage the UK to play a leadership role in creating a better, more humane food and farming system worldwide.
In our fight against live animal exports, our movement has already been successful in stopping much of the trade in sheep and calves to the continent; down from 2.5 million animals a year in the 1990s to some 100,000 a year today. We will now step up our efforts to persuade the UK government to ban this cruel trade outright, once and for all.
Just as importantly, Compassion has no intention of turning its back on the billions of European animals suffering every year in factory farms and during long distance transport.
With supporters, offices and allies across the continent, and an established presence in Brussels, we will continue to press for legislative changes to benefit these animals too.
We will continue to push for change across the entire European region, calling on an entire continent to stand up against cruelty to farm animals in all its guises, not least through consigning them to life in cages. We will continue to press home the message that farming needs to evolve by ending the cage age.
As an international animal welfare charity, our relentless focus remains on ending factory farming, wherever it exists.
Our resolve to see change that transcends national boundaries remains unaltered.
Whilst our headquarters are based in the UK, we have offices and representatives in 10 other countries covering four continents.
We will continue to join hands with kindred spirits in the USA, China, South Africa and across Europe to bring better lives to farm animals.
And, of course, our global programme to challenge and engage with major food companies, many of whom have both UK and European operations, will continue unabated – encouraging companies to make the switch from factory farmed meat, milk and eggs to higher welfare, and thereby changing the lives of hundreds of millions of animals for the better.
We are entering a period of uncertainty regarding the political and policy landscape in the UK.
However, Compassion will continue to use every means at our disposal to influence legislation, food company practices, and consumer attitudes, in the interests of all farm animals.
With your ongoing support, we will build a better future for animal welfare in the UK, in Europe, and around the world.
On behalf of the farm animals who cannot speak up for themselves, thank you for standing with us.