Algemeen Vrachtkantoor aka Alvracht is a Dutch inland shipping
company, which is no longer in operation, in fact a short but informative
history has disappeared from the ‘net – for the moment still available
in a Google cache, the original url being: vegoil.vopak.com/about_us/histbarging.html
Highlights: in 1918, Dutch butter manufacturers Simon van den Bergh
and Anton Jurgens decided to cooperate and to found a common company ensuring
constant supply of raw materials: ‘Algemeen Vrachtkantoor NV’ (i.e.
General Freight Office Ltd) followed by the merger, in 1927, of both factories
into Margarine Unie which was to become Unilever in 1930 after yet
another merger with a British firm, Lever Brothers. The nine available
barges started to work for the group. ‘Algemeen Vrachtkantoor’,
now a subsidiary, worked mainly for Unilever (transport of vegetable oils)
during the period 1936-1989 but also for other customers.
In 1989 AV and Unilever-owned ‘Elbe’ from Germany were sold to Federal
Express only to be sold again to Van Ommeren
two years later. When Van Ommeren and Pakhoed joined forces in 1999,
the ‘vegetable oil fleet’ - as the article has it - went to the Barging
division of Vopak Vegoil Logistics.But Vopak,
and here I am done highlighting, is another chapter and so is Van Ommeren!
The house flag – or such as it was when Algemeen Vrachtkantoor disappeared
– was white with a striking logo consisting of three chevrons, differently
positoned, and coloured blue, black, and green, probably recalling initials.
See it on this
Binnenvaart page (drawing) concerning ‘Columbia’, the former ‘Alvracht
20’. Click on the camera logo near ‘1970’ at the bottom of the page, which
will lead you to a photo showing the flag as well as the chevrons on the
bow of the vessel.
Jan Mertens, 11 Oct 2006
Alvracht old flag
image by Jos Telleman, 12 Nov 2006
Jos Telleman sent me the old flag of "Algemeen Vrachtkantoor" (General
Freight Office): a white flag, at the hoist three narrow vertical stripes
of blue, orange and blue; in center blue disk, charged with orange "AVK".
Jarig Bakker, 12 Nov 2006
image by Jos Telleman, 16 Nov 2006
Another image sent by Jos Telleman: The pennant of Alvracht: a burgee
of three equally wide horizontal stripes of orange and blue; on blue "ALVRACHT"
Jarig Bakker, 16 Nov 2006