When Harris Waste Management Group, Inc. opened in 1889, it served as a machine shop and planing mill that transformed cuts of wood into finished dimensional lumber. But the business soon expanded into many other areas.
"At the beginning of the 20th century, Harris Waste Management Group created a wheel press," explained Joel Foy, the business' marketing coordinator. "That was the beginning of [our company] in the baling press business."
Based in Tyrone, Ga., Harris Waste Management Group (HarrisEquip.com) now assembles balers, shears, shredders and compactors.
"We were the first company to manufacture the baling press in the late 1930s," stated Scott Holder, who works on Harris Waste Management Group's shredder sales team. "We're the largest manufacturer for recycling and scrap processing equipment in the U.S. today."
Building For The Military
In 1938, Harris Waste Management Group began designing and constructing a hydraulic sheet metal baling press. And after the United States entered World War II and the Korean War, the company was called upon to make components for the military, including machine gun assembly parts, shields and shell casings.
"We introduced the hydraulic scrap shear in 1956," said Foy. "In the late 1960s, we designed and manufactured the HRB baler for processing paper. Our products have evolved to the point where you can fragment it down and get better separation of scrap metal - both ferrous and nonferrous - from the non-metallic components."
Harris Waste Management Group's product line is flexible as well.
"We have five different shredder sizes," noted Holder. "But not every shredder fits every customer, which is why we can customize our equipment. Whether it's different volumes that the customer wants, or different types of materials they want to separate, we can accommodate that in our product design. We'll even draw out a configuration for the plant, which will help them get the appropriate permits."
Harris Waste Management Group, which is owned by Melrose PLC (MelrosePLC.net), headquartered in London, provides assistance throughout the entire sales process.
"We have engineering partners and mechanical installation companies who work with us," explained Holder. "A lot of customers have asked for help over the years, and as a result, we developed these partnerships throughout the world. This enables us to walk our customers through the process from start to finish; a turnkey operation."
Most equipment is installed at Harris Waste Management Group's Cordele, Ga., manufacturing facility. The smallest shredder (60 inches) the company sells is transportable and takes about seven days to install.
All Harris Waste Management Group's equipment comes with a one-year warranty, and it carries replacement parts for all products, no matter how old they are.
"We've got a lot of equipment out there that's 50 or 60 years old," said Holder. "We're still making and selling parts for those machines."
Holder said the quality of its products is what separates Harris Waste Management Group - which employs 200 people globally - from its competition.
"All our manufacturing is done in-house," he said. "We control the quality that goes into each machine, and that has made all the difference. We're always looking to improve our product offerings based on the changing needs of our customers."
Owners: Melrose PLC
Location: Tyrone, Ga.
Years In Business: 123
Number Of Employees: 200