Scrap Brothers finds new use for old building
"The future is in recycling," Ken Hogan told the local officials and citizens who gathered on January 25 for the grand opening of Scrap Brothers, Inc. in the former Consolidated Orchards building in Paw Paw.
Scrap Brothers is a recycling business that collects, buys, sorts and resells aluminum, copper, brass, stainless steel, glass, paper, some auto parts and just about any other recyclable. There's even a section of salvaged building materials available for sale to the public.
Owner Ken Hogan has run a similar business in LaVale, Md. for the past 15 years and sees the Paw Paw facility as his entrance into West Virginia. He said he got into recycling for something to do. While the firm is called Scrap Brothers, Hogan has no partner "brother" but hopes his two sons will eventually take things over in the future.
Currently seven people work at the Paw Paw plant, but Hogan expects to have as many as 33 employees by next winter. Since buying the former orchard cold storage building in October, he has continued the fixup of the structure that was started by the previous owner.
In December, Hogan began accepting recyclables and buys large and small quantities. "So far, we've had a great welcoming and we're busy," he said.
Already, the paper collected by Morgan County Recycling is being taken to Scrap Brothers and eventually the cans and glass will be taken there, too, said Charlie Biggs of the Morgan County Solid Waste Authority.
People coming through the door with scrap metal can have it weighed on the spot. Truckloads can be weighed on scales at a loading dock on the side of the building.
Inside, the goods are neatly divided and stored in different areas of the warehouse until they are sold to industries that use recycled materials.
Hogan said one of the keys to the Paw Paw facility, and to the recycling business these days, is that the work and storage be done inside so it is not an eyesore to residents and visitors. His intention is to make Scrap Brothers a business that Paw Paw can be proud of. Town officials have been helpful with the company's start-up, he said.
The grand opening event was organized by the Paw Paw Municipal Development Authority and the Paw Paw Town Council. It was also attended by the Morgan County Commissioners and members of the Morgan County Economic Development Authority.