Improving animal welfare

How best to help animals

Meat consumption in Germany is on the decline. Nevertheless, almost 750 million animals died for food production in Germany alone in 2023.[1] Most of these animals are raised in inappropriate, cruel conditions on factory farms. Organic meat, for example, still only represents a niche market with a share of less than 4%. [2]

For comparison: according to estimates, around 350,000 new animals are admitted to animal shelters in Germany every year.[3] Therefore, more than 2,000 (two thousand!) times as many animals are slaughtered each year in factory farms than are admitted to animal shelters.

The situation is similar in other countries. Worldwide, more than 80 billion farm animals are slaughtered every year, many times more than the number of pets kept worldwide.[4] [5]

Farm animals don't have a lobby

Nevertheless, most people tend to focus on pets. While the law prescribes an area of between 6-10 square meters for keeping dogs in enclosures, for example,[6] pigs weighing significantly more than 100 kg at the time of slaughter must make do with less than one square meter. 

The focus of many people on the welfare of pets is also reflected in the volume of donations: In the US, for example, only 0.8% of donations go to organizations that focus on reducing the suffering of farm animals. (Similar figures are unfortunately not available for Germany.) For every animal in an animal shelter, around $500 are donated, while only around 0.2 US cents are donated for every animal in factory farms!

The leverage is great

This means that donations are not going where they are most needed to help the most animals. For example, it costs more than $1,000 per year to house an animal in a shelter. With the same amount of money, a highly effective farm animal welfare organization can accomplish much more. For example, The Humane League would use the $1,000 to engage in dialogue with companies to improve conditions for farmed animals, to convince people to reduce their meat consumption, or to conduct research. According to independent analysis, The Humane League thereby improves the lives of thousands of animals instead of just one.

More than just animal suffering

In addition to alleviating the suffering of billions of animals, there are other reasons to reduce the global consumption of animal products. Factory farms are responsible for over 10% of global greenhouse gas emissions .[7] This is more than the emissions from the entire transportation sector - i.e. all cars, airplanes and ships in the world - put together. In concrete terms, for example, the production of 1 kg of beef generates over 22 kg of CO2-equivalents, the equivalent of driving more than 100 km in a car.

In addition, industrial livestock farming is responsible for enormous water consumption, contributes to the contamination of groundwater through the production of liquid manure and accelerates the development of multi-resistant germs through the excessive use of antibiotics.

Your personal advice

Everyone who gives wants to make a difference. We want to help you make the biggest impact possible, in line with your ideas and values. Simply make an appointment for your personal advisory session.

Anne Schulze,
Founder & Managing Director

Your personal advice

Everyone who gives wants to make a difference. We want to help you make the biggest impact possible, in line with your ideas and values. Simply make an appointment for your personal advisory session.

Anne Schulze,
Founder & Managing Director

FAQs

How much should I donate?

How much you want to donate is of course ultimately your own personal decision, but perhaps you will find some inspiration in the articles "How much should I donate?" and "Why and how I donate.

Can I deduct my donation from my taxes?

Yes, you can make your donation in Germany and Switzerland tax deductible, even if the recommended organizations are based abroad. We will automatically send you a donation receipt for all your donations by e-mail at the end of February of the following year. You don't have to do anything else.

I don't want to donate online, can I also transfer the money?

You are also welcome to make a traditional bank transfer. Please use our donation form under "Payment method", select the "Bank transfer" tab, enter your details, which we need for the donation receipt, and register your donation. You will then receive an e-mail with our donation account and a reference that will enable us to allocate your donation correctly as soon as you have transferred the donation.

What are the fees? Will you forward 100% of my donation?

We process donations free of charge, i.e. we do not keep any of your donation for ourselves. However, credit card or PayPal fees are charged by the payment providers we work with. These depend on the selected payment method and are calculated as follows for Germany:

  • Bank transfer: Free of charge within the SEPA payment area
  • SEPA-direct debit: 0,35 €
  • Credit card: 1.2% + 0.25 € (for European cards)
  • PayPal: 1,5% + 0,35 €

Therefore  we recommend the "SEPA-direct debit payment" for donations of up to €10,0000. For security reasons, the only option currently available for amounts of €10,000 or more is  "Bank transfer"

Comparable fees would also be incurred for a direct donation to the respective organizations. We have already negotiated with all payment providers and obtained particularly favorable conditions for non-profit organizations.

We also finance ourselves through donations, but completely independently.

You can find out more  here.

How can I change or cancel my permanent donation?

If you want to increase or decrease the amount of your donation, simply contact us by e-mail at info@effektiv-spenden.org . We are also happy to change the organizations/ projects/funds to which you donate if you wish. Unfortunately, we cannot change payment methods of already existing donations. To do this, you will need to cancel your donation and then set it up again.

You can cancel your permanent donation at any time and without giving reasons. Simply send us an informal e-mail to info@effektiv-spenden.org or call us at +49 (0)30 / 260 355 19.

How do you cover your costs?

Effektiv Spenden is made possible by private sponsors. This support enables us to cover all administrative costs. This allows us to pass on your donation in full to our top organizations. Of course, we are also happy about your donation to us as a platform. You can find out more about our funding here.

Sources

[1] ↑ Schlachtzahlen und Fleischverzehr 2023. Albert Schweitzer Foundation. https://albert-schweitzer-stiftung.de/aktuell/schlachtzahlen-fleischverzehr-2023. March 2023.

[2] ↑ Wie hat sich der Marktanteil von Bio-Fleisch entwickelt? Ökolandbau.de. https://www.oekolandbau.de/handel/marktinformationen/wie-hat-sich-der-marktanteil-von-bio-fleisch-entwickelt/. Last updated August 2023.

[3] ↑ Mehr als 100.000 Tiere werden jährlich nicht vermittelt. ZDF. https://www.zdf.de/nachrichten/panorama/tierheime-ueberfuelleung-corona-pandemie-100.html. August 2023.

[4] ↑ Excluding fish and seafood. See also Animal Welfare Explorer. Our World in Data. https://ourworldindata.org/explorers/animal-welfare.

[5] ↑ Exact figures for pets are not available. It is estimated that there are over 1 billion pets. (See e.g. Global Trends in the Pet Population. Health for Animals. https://www.healthforanimals.org/reports/pet-care-report/global-trends-in-the-pet-population/. September 2022). It should be noted that only a very small proportion of these are taken in by animal shelters.

[6] ↑ Animal Welfare Dog Ordinance (Tierschutz-Hundeverordnung), §6, Federal Office of Justice. https://www.gesetze-im-internet.de/tierschhuv/BJNR083800001.html. May 2001.

[7] ↑ 12% of anthropogenic greenhouse gas emissions based on the reference year 2015. Pathways towards lower emissions: A global assessment of the greenhouse gas emissions and mitigation options from livestock agrifood systems. Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations (FAO). https://doi.org/10.4060/cc9029en. December 2023. See also Food production is responsible for one-quarter of the world's greenhouse gas emissions. Our World in Data. https://ourworldindata.org/food-ghg-emissions. November 2019.