Farmcare Trading Ltd.
Industry Farming, Wholesale
Founded 1896
Headquarters England and Scotland
Key people
Richard Quinn
(Chief executive)
Products Food
Number of employees
Parent Wellcome Trust

Farmcare Trading Limited is the largest lowland farming organisation in the United Kingdom.[1][2] Farmcare traded as The Co-operative Farms while a subsidiary of The Co-operative Group until it was sold to the Wellcome Trust in 2014.


The Co-operative Farms

The first farm was acquired at Roden, Shropshire in 1896 in order to supply potatoes to local societies' stores.[3] By 1918, the then Co-operative Wholesale Society already farmed a total of 32,648 acres (13,212 ha) across England.[4]

Following the merger of CWS and Co-operative Retail Services in 2001, CWS Agriculture became Farmcare Limited.[5] It was rebranded as The Co-operative Farms in 2007.

Wellcome Trust

On 4 August 2014, the business was sold to the Wellcome Trust for £249 million, to reduce The Co-operative Group's debt following its financial crisis in 2013.[6] At the time of the sale, The Co-operative Farms owned 39,533 acres (15,998 ha) of land organised as 15 farms, and more than 100 residential and 27 commercial properties.[7]

See also


  1. Registered under the Industrial and Provident Societies Act 1965, No. 28966R
  2. "Farmcare builds on its own identity following Co-op sell off". Farmers Guardian. 31 October 2014. Archived from the original on 22 January 2015. Retrieved 21 January 2015.
  3. The foundations The Co-operative Farms (retrieved 21 August 2009)
  4. The war years The Co-operative Farms (retrieved 21 August 2009)
  5. Mutuals Public Register Financial Services Authority (retrieved 21 August 2009)
  6. Wellcome Trust acquires the Co-operative Group's farms business for £249 million
  7. "Co-op sells farms business to Wellcome Trust for £249m". BBC. 4 August 2014. Retrieved 4 August 2014.
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