Avoncroft Cattle Breeders
The farmer owned Co-Operative was set up in 1944 with a grant from the Cadbury Trust (The Cadbury Quaker family of chocolate makers). Operating under a Ministry of Agriculture licence Avoncroft Cattle Breeders was run by a Board of Directors of local dairy farmers.
Avoncroft Cattle Breeders ran an AI service for over 3,500 farmers in the West Midlands with AI technicians operating out of five centres at Hereford, Bromyard, Alcester, Banbury and Faringdon.
The head offices in Bromsgrove also housed laboratories and collection facilities for up to 120 bulls, used both for the AI service and export. British Friesian bulls were then the main breed on the stud with Canadian Holstein gradually replacing the British Friesian as the preferred dairy breed with many beef bulls also being collected for the AI service. Collection and storage of privately owned bulls was also part of the business.
For marketing purposes Avoncroft Cattle Breeders were linked to the SuperSires Group along with Dartington Cattle Breeders, Somerset Cattle Breeders, Hampshire Cattle Breeders and Scottish Livestock Services. By the 1990s Avoncroft Cattle Breeders had in excess of 20,000 UK wide farmer members of the Co-Operative and over 30 AI technicians in the field.
In 1995 Avoncroft Cattle Breeders acquired Black & White Sires followed by Herdwise in 1996. These brought a national sales team to Avoncroft along with branches in Northern Ireland and the Republic of Ireland. Also an AI service was set up operating out of Tiverton in Devon and we started using the name Avoncroft Sires.
In 2000 CR Delta (now CRV) purchased Avoncroft and we became Avoncroft Sires Ltd. The Irish companies were closed.
Over the following four years the assets of the original Avoncroft Cattle Breeders, land buildings etc were sold and proceeds distributed to the remaining members. We believe that the distribution of assets was based on the buying history of each member during the last three years of trading.
As part of the CR Delta group Avoncroft Sires Ltd offices and semen store moved to Stoke Prior near Bromsgrove. During the Foot & Mouth crisis of 2001 the entire AI service of Avoncroft was ended.
In 2004 Avoncroft Sires Ltd was sold to five former employees and became Avoncroft Genetics Ltd with offices in Bewdley.
In 2014 CRV bought Avoncroft Genetics Ltd and we became CRV Avoncroft.