Farm Sanctuary Joins Global Federation of Leading Animal Sanctuaries

Farm Sanctuary Joins Global Federation of Leading Animal Sanctuaries

Animal welfare issues gaining in importance as public learns more about abusive practices

Watkins Glen, NY – The Global Federation of Animal Sanctuaries (GFAS) is honored to announce that the farm animal sanctuary owned and operated by Farm Sanctuary, Inc., in Watkins Glen, NY — the country’s very first sanctuary for abused and neglected farm animals and the inspiration for countless others since — has achieved GFAS Accreditation.

“Farm Sanctuary does an outstanding job of providing excellent care to its animals, and using its sanctuary as an educational tool to raise awareness of farm animal welfare issues,” said Jackie Beckstead, Director of Accreditation and Field Operations for GFAS.

The accreditation means the Farm Sanctuary facility in Watkins Glen, NY, meets the comprehensive and rigorous definition of a true sanctuary and is providing humane and responsible care of animals, meeting rigorous and peer-reviewed standards for operations, administration, and veterinary care established by GFAS, which is the only globally recognized organization providing standards for identifying legitimate animal sanctuaries. The accreditation status also provides a clear and trusted means for public, donors, and government agencies to recognize the Watkins Glen facility owned and operated by Farm Sanctuary as an exceptional sanctuary.

Opened in 1990, the Watkins Glen facility is a 175-acre sanctuary in which more than 500 rescued farm animals have room to live in safety and in the company of their own species.  The facility is open to the public and offers guided tours, an Educational Center, and a gift shop.

Farm Sanctuary President and Co-Founder Gene Baur, who was hailed “the conscience of the food movement” by TIME magazine, says “Documentaries like BLACKFISH and the recent spate of headlines about animal deaths at zoos due to neglect have people seeking out new, respectful ways of interacting with and learning about animals in their natural habitats and this awareness is being extended to the animals who are brutally treated in our industrial food system. I predict that sanctuaries will grow to eclipse zoos and amusement parks as the best destination for animal-lovers in search of memorable experiences.”

Beckstead states, “Farm animals are subjected to cruelty and abuse on a scale that is difficult to fathom.  Treating them humanely and ending some of the worst forms of institutional abuse on factory farms is a top priority among the humane community.  Farm Sanctuary is a leader in promoting farm animal welfare, and it succeeds by introducing everyday people to rescued farm animals, in a happy, peaceful environment that emphasizes treating all animals with kindness, respect, and an utmost concern for their well-being.”

For more information on GFAS, please visit  For additional information on Farm Sanctuary’s Watkins Glen facility, visit

About Global Federation of Animal Sanctuaries
Global Federation of Animal Sanctuaries (GFAS) is a 501(c)3 nonprofit organization dedicated to the sole purpose of strengthening and supporting the work of animal sanctuaries, rescues, and rehabilitation centers worldwide. The goal of GFAS in working with and assisting these animal care facilities is to ensure they are supported, honored, recognized and rewarded for meeting important criteria in providing care to the animals in residence. GFAS was founded in 2007 by animal protection leaders from a number of different organizations in response to virtually unchecked and often hidden exploitation of animals for human entertainment and financial profit. The GFAS Board of Directors guides the organization’s work in a collaborative manner. While the board includes those in top leadership at Born Free USA, The Humane Society of the United States, International Fund for Animal Welfare, the ASPCA, and American Anti-Vivisection Society, all board members serve as individuals dedicated to animal sanctuaries.

About Farm Sanctuary
Farm Sanctuary operates shelters in New York and California that provide lifelong care for nearly 1,000 rescued farm animals. The organization works to protect farm animals from cruelty, inspire change in the way society views and treats farm animals, and promotes compassionate vegan living.