Jefferson County Business Rises From Ashes

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By Diane Rutherford

Like a phoenix that rises from the ashes as a new bird, a Jefferson County business that lost everything in a fire has rebuilt and hopes to come back stronger than ever.

Berry Brothers Lumber on Route 11 in the town of Adams is a family business that makes bedding for farm animals.

A fixture in the community for more than 60 years, the company's sawmill burned to the ground on June 16, 2008.

"It wiped us out and in the last eight months we've struggled to build buildings and at this point in time we are completely operational again," said Lee Berry, who co-owns the business with his brother, Gary.

Lee says the road to recovery has been difficult in this tough economy.

However, the business got a much-needed shot in the arm last month at the New York State Farm Show last month.

Before the show, sales for its wood and paper-based animal bedding were slow.

After the show, the business began filling truckload after truckload of the bedding to customers.

"In spite of everything, there have been a lot of blessings along with the hardships," said Lee.

The business was previously in the timber business, but a downturn in the industry prompted Berry Brothers to turn to the animal bedding product.

Monday, July 28, 2014
, Watertown, NY

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