The Alpaca Breeders of the Rockies is about enhancing the dynamic new livestock and alpaca products industry in North America by helping our members create successful business models, by leading and influencing the future of the alpaca industry, by promoting unity, and building highly effective partnerships with our members and others throughout the industry.
The Alpaca Breeders of the Rockies is an organization of volunteers capable of leading and influencing the future of the alpaca industry by supporting its members through education, marketing, events, and public awareness. ABR is dedicated to promoting ethical conduct in the alpaca industry, to enhancing the public’s perception of the industry, to the health and welfare of the alpacas, to the long-term well-being of the market, and to being an active voice for its members throughout the industry, all for the purpose of helping our members succeed.
Alpaca Breeders of the Rockies had its beginnings in Colorado as Alpaca Breeders of Colorado. It began in the spring of 1994, when a few enthusiastic alpaca breeders agreed that there was a need to come together to consolidate their marketing resources and to enrich their knowledge and understanding of alpacas and their fiber. They wanted to inform others about the joys and rewards of alpaca ownership. The fledgling group began by creating a breeder's directory with a state map. The maps were distributed at the 1994 Estes Park Wool Market. The response was overwhelming. By the end of the association's first summer, the members began to research expanding their advertising possibilities. They sought to create banners, logos, and ad layouts, and to organize information on regional fairs. By 1995, the membership had expanded its borders to include the surrounding Western states. It's new name reflected this change, Alpaca Breeders of the Rockies. It's membership continued to grow at a rapid pace.
In 1996, ABR became an affiliate of the national association, Alpaca Owners and Breeders Association. It was also in 1996 that the national alpaca association moved its annual conference out of Estes Park, Colorado where it had outgrown the facilities at the Estes Park Wool Market. ABR saw this as a prime opportunity to take over sponsoring the alpaca events. The Rocky Mountain Alpaca Roundup, at the Estes Park Wool Market, grew to be one of the largest alpaca-sponsored events in North America. ABR was instrumental in bringing alpacas to the Taos Hacienda Martinez Trade Fair and the Taos Wool Festival in New Mexico.
In October 1997, ABR launched the First Annual Alpaca Fall Festival. ABR members came together to educate the public on the ownership and care of alpacas.
In May 2003, after again outgrowing the Estes Park Wool Market, ABR inaugurated the Great Western Alpaca Show (GWAS) at the National Western Stock Show complex in Denver, Colorado. This showcase event brings participants together for halter shows, performance classes, fleece judging contests, informational seminars, obstacle courses, demonstrations, auctions and private-treaty sales. This event is free and open to the general public and is a tremendous marketing and sales opportunity for ABR members and show participants. In 2007, GWAS had over 1,000 alpacas onsite. ABR also represents its membership at many regional events and seminars where it disseminates alpaca educational and marketing material. ABR has an electronic newsletter that provides educational articles, along with networking and marketing tools. The breeder's directory is still a mainstay in ABR's advertising program. Today, ABR markets in alpaca and livestock magazines, local media and through the internet. ABR has a marketing mission to help our members be successful by educating a broad spectrum of prospective enthusiasts and the general public about alpacas. ABR believes that alpacas are a vibrant and long-term industry that contributes to agri-business, the economy, and a wonderful life-style for alpaca owners. As such, ABR has adopted the following marketing mission statement and direction.
ABR holds regular quarterly meetings with programs selected from alpaca health, fiber, marketing, farm management and other pertinent topics. Time is also devoted to an ABR business meeting and there is ample time to socialize and network during lunch and throughout the day. There is ample time to socialize and network during lunch and throughout the day. Guests are always welcome. Farm, associate and business memberships are available. Benefits of the different types of membership and the application form can be viewed on the Join ABR page. Members of Alpaca Breeders of the Rockies are spread across the plains, nestled in the foothills, the high mountains and in peaceful valleys of Colorado and the Rocky Mountain region. The pristine beauty of America envelops us. ABR extends its warm hospitality to you and invites you to explore the tranquil beauty of alpacas either here on the World Wide Web or visit us in person. Come and enjoy these animals for their aesthetic appeal, their charming personality, and their prime business and investment potential. Make your experience richer by stepping into the serene natural beauty when you visit our ranches and farms.