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ARCHIVED  May 1, 1997

Harsh to expand manufacturing with Eaton plant

EATON – Harsh International Inc. is set to expand operations at its Eaton-based industrial park to accommodate growth of the company’s contract-manufacturing business.

The agricultural and industrial equipment manufacturer recently ventured into contract manufacturing for other companies across the country and met with such a tremendous response that company officials plan to build another facility and add at least 30,000 square feet of factory space to more than 150,000 square feet already in place.

“Contract manufacturing began as a sideline,´ said Bob Brown, company president. “But it’s grown from an extra hour of work, to a full second shift, to the point where we had to get a new machine to handle the volume. Right now we’re processing 150 tons of metal a week.”

Harsh now has two laser processing machines and a water jet cutter. Brown said the 2,600-watt and 3,000-watt laser machines can slice through 3/4-inch steel with little waste, heat or smoke, and the water-jet cutter will cut through up to four inches of glass, marble, aluminum and other materials, using only water.

“No one else in the region has these kinds of machines,” Brown said. “The nearest are in Denver, and I don’t think they’re as powerful or as busy.”

Brown said word of the company’s capabilities has spread and brought business from around the country, but the company tries to remain focused on Northern Colorado.

“We’re loyal to the region, and we consider our Northern Colorado customers a priority,” he said.

Headquartered in Eaton, Harsh International’s location has served the growing company well, Brown said. The company is ideally situated for trucking along U.S. Highway 85 and Interstate 25 running north and south and between Interstates 80 and 70 running east and west, and as Brown points out, is centrally located in the country.

Strategically placed warehouses in the United States, Mexico and Canada provide necessary links for international distribution.

Right now, Harsh operates a 120,000-square-foot main plant in Eaton and a 36,000-square-foot factory in the Harsh Industrial Park in the southeast corner of town. Though dates for construction haven’t been set, and Brown said it could be several months before the expansion is under way, he estimates that a new facility in the industrial park would be at least 30,000 square feet and initially provide a dozen jobs.

“We like a lot of square footage and the flexibility it provides,” Brown said. “You can build a lot of little things in a big building, but you can’t build big things in a little building.”

Weld farmer to lead dairy groups

GREELEY – Weld County dairy farmer Les Hardesty has been elected chairman of the board of directors of the Western Dairyfarmers Promotion Association and Western Dairy Council.

Hardesty has been a dairy farmer for 15 years and has been associated with Western Dairymen Cooperative Inc. and its predecessor, Mountain Empire Dairy Association. He has served on that board and on the boards of the Western Dairyfarmers Promotion Association and Western Dairy Council since 1994.

Hardesty operates a dairy farm near Greeley with his wife, Sherrill. Their farm milks 340 cows daily.

“I feel very excited about my new position and feel strongly that the board of directors will continue to utilize dairy farmer check-off dollars to promote our products and industry in the most effective way possible,” Hardesty said in a prepared statement.

Hardesty earned a bachelor of science degree in animal science from Colorado State University and is a 1995 graduate of the Colorado Agriculture Leadership program. He’s served on the board of directors of the Colorado Holstein Association and has chaired the Rocky Mountain Rendezvous, a registered Holstein sale, for two years.

The Western Dairyfarmers Promotion Association is an affiliate of the American Dairy Association and is an advertising and promotional organization. The Western Dairy Council is affiliated with the National Dairy Council and is a nonprofit nutrition-education organization.

EATON – Harsh International Inc. is set to expand operations at its Eaton-based industrial park to accommodate growth of the company’s contract-manufacturing business.

The agricultural and industrial equipment manufacturer recently ventured into contract manufacturing for other companies across the country and met with such a tremendous response that company officials plan to build another facility and add at least 30,000 square feet of factory space to more than 150,000 square feet already in place.

“Contract manufacturing began as a sideline,´ said Bob Brown, company president. “But it’s grown from an extra hour of work, to a full second shift, to the point…

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