Astec: Built to Connect with Forestry

Peterson Pacific Corp., the Oregon-based forestry equipment manufacturer, has rebranded to align with Astec, its parent company. Astec has continued to grow the forestry equipment product lines since acquiring Peterson in 2007. Shown above is the Astec 4300B drum chipper.
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Peterson Pacific Corp., the long-time, Oregon-based forestry equipment manufacturer, officially rebranded earlier this year to align with its parent company, Astec.

To maintain its expansion and to build cohesion, Astec has driven the rebrand with a ‘Simplify, Focus and Grow’ strategy.

Rebranding with this strategy in mind, Astec has simplified the way business is conducted through a streamlined approach with one brand name instead of many, has put renewed focus on customer success and connection, and plans to grow as a dedicated partner in the industries it serves.

“By coming together as one organization, we can offer greater customer service and drive innovation,” said Barry Ruffalo, president and CEO of Astec, who led the rebrand effort.Founded in 1972 in Chattanooga, Tennessee, Astec began as a small business manufacturing asphalt mixing and paving equipment. It was known for innovation and had many successful initiatives throughout the years. As Astec enjoyed steady success over time, the company acquired nearly 20 subsidiary brands across the forestry, road building, aggregate, and other industries.

Astec entered the forestry industry with its acquisition of Peterson in 2007. Since then, Astec has focused on the environmental benefits of forestry with its extensive line of equipment for the industry.

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The many Astec subsidiary brands, like Peterson, operated under their original company names and with a decentralized business model until this year. All the subsidiaries now are united under the Astec brand name. “The rebrand enables us to build our strength together under one common name and purpose,” said Ruffalo.

With the rebrand came a new, modern logo and paint scheme for Astec equipment. In addition, the subsidiary websites have been consolidated into one website that has been designed with resources for all of the Astec product lines. The single website allows customers to access information about all Astec products in one convenient online location.

The global manufacturing company plans to continue its long-term vision of designing and building state-of-the-art machinery for a modern, ever-changing world. Astec has evolved its technology through decades of business and continues to lead industries in expertise and innovation.

Focus on Forestry

Peterson began as a commercial construction business in 1981, and soon it expanded into manufacturing equipment it required for land-clearing and construction operations. It grew rapidly through the years, focusing on the development of grinders and recycling machinery. Peterson expanded into equipment for landscapers and other contractors in 2001 with its series of blower trucks for distributing mulch, compost, bark and soil for landscaping projects and to prevent soil erosion.

Astec recognized the success and potential of the Peterson brand and acquired it in 2007. Since then Astec has continued to grow the forestry equipment product lines, manufacturing complete industry-leading systems, including horizontal grinders, disc and drum chippers, debarkers, and blower trucks and trailers.

Product Applications

Horizontal grinders and drum chippers are two of the top forestry equipment lines produced by Astec. The company offers a wide range of models with various sizes and capacities, including portable and mobile versions. Applications for these machines include land clearing, recycling organic and waste wood, and producing chips for the pulp and paper industry, feedstock for the wood fuel pellet industry, mulch and related products, and biomass.

Land clearing for residential or commercial development is one of the most common applications for horizontal grinders and chippers. These heavy-duty machines can process large organic material — such as whole trees and stumps — into finished products that generate revenue.

Another application for grinders and chippers is processing organic material into biomass, which is used for fuel to produce energy. Biomass is an environmentally-friendly option that can provide carbon-neutral energy. Astec and its forestry equipment is an essential partner in this clean energy production process.

Astec forestry equipment also plays a critical role in natural disaster cleanup operations. Dangerous debris from hurricanes, tornadoes, earthquakes and other disasters must be eliminated to restore affected areas. Horizontal grinders are the ideal machine for these operations because they are a safe, efficient method for reducing the debris and converting it into a useful material.

Horizontal grinders are versatile machines that can handle many different job types, and recycling is an important one. For example, they are ideal for recycling nursery and agriculture waste into compost and soil blends — usually with just one pass through the machine. This is a cost-efficient, green solution for processing waste material from farms and nurseries. Astec horizontal grinders also can be used to recycle scrap pallets, used railroad ties, and similar wood debris, processing it into revenue-generating products and at the same time diverting wood material from landfills.

Astec equipment can be used for other forestry-related applications, such as processing residual materials from sawmills and other wood products manufacturing facilities, salvage timber operations, plantation tree rotation, and producing pulp and paper industry chips.

A significant advantage of Astec grinders and chippers is the impact release and impact cushion system. These features protect the machine by removing contaminated or uncrushable material that could otherwise cause damage and allow for non-stop grinding, decreasing downtime. The impact release system technology, which saves contractors time and money, is unique to Astec equipment.

Astec blower trucks and trailers are the premium option for applying mulch, playground chips, and chips and light aggregates to prevent soil erosion, an important capability for landscapers and construction contractors.

Customers at Forefront

With the rebrand, Astec offers the forestry industry a simplified relationship with customers and dealers and provides a global service and support network that situates customers at the forefront of the business. The customer support teams within Astec provide comprehensive service before, during, and after the purchasing process to ensure that all of a customer’s needs are met.

Astec provides continued training, education and development to its customers and technicians for equipment mechanics and maintenance, a critical advantage. In-person training events are held at several Astec sites and customer and dealer locations. The company also provides online training options that are easily accessible. Astec has support teams around the globe that are always available to service customers.

Looking Ahead

The unified Astec brand provides many benefits and opportunities to customers, dealers, and employees. “We made the decision to unify to make it easier for our dealers and customers to do business with us,” said Ruffalo.

Astec is a valuable partner to its forestry industry customers. It offers the most modern, durable, efficient, and environmentally-friendly products on the market, and they are designed for a wide range of applications. And its customer service and support operations have demonstrated industry-leading training opportunities, technological and mechanical support, and service.

Connection is at the heart of this new beginning for Astec — Astec is Built to Connect.

(For more information about Astec machinery and equipment, visit or contact your nearest Astec dealer.)