From Modesto Chamber of Commerce Progress Magazine, September 2011

Modesto Junk Company is poised to raise the scrap metal recycling industry to new heights in Modesto with against-the-trend growth, essential partnerships and a new heavy-duty rotating shear unlike any seen before on the West Coast.

The downtown Modesto Company, first established in 1920, has specialized in turning junk into profit under the command of the Highiet family for four generations. Today, in addition to offering the area’s highest prices for scrap metal, Modesto Junk Company is an industry leader in environmental efforts and a supporter of many local charitable groups.

Earlier this year, Modesto Junk purchased a Caterpillar (CAT) ‘Scrap & Demolition 365C’ rotating shear, the first of its kind on the West Coast of the United States and a showcase installation for both CAT and Modesto Junk Company. The shear, which attaches to a newer 70,000-pound excavator, provides for increased efficiency by greatly reducing excavator repositioning as well as increasing the rate that scrap can be cut by up to 75% over traditional shears. Accompanying the major equipment upgrades, Modesto Junk Company has also been adding new jobs locally. Despite the down economy, employment at the company has increased 20% over the past two years, from 25 to 30 persons.

In a move to ensure future growth, the Company has landed exclusive rights as the only area dismantler of off-road agricultural equipment for the San Joaquin Valley Air Pollution Control District’s Tractor Trade-In Replacement Program. The program, which is similar to Cash-for-Cars, is aimed at reducing emissions from older tractors by offering owners of off-road agricultural equipment substantial paybacks when they scrap older units and purchase new equipment with better emissions standards. More information about the program is available at or at (209) 557-6400.

For more information on the ways that Modesto Junk Company is turning scrap metal into opportunity, visit

Original article can be found in Progress Magazine (September 2011, page 21).