Kay Bell Jr. started Bell Marine Co., Inc. in the San Francisco Bay area as a supplier of sand dredged from San Francisco Bay. Operating from Redwood City, CA., Bell Marine used tugboats and barges to bring the sand to shore where is it was sold for fill material and as an additive to local quarries Aggregate Base (AB) Rock products.
At one point Bell Marine began to accept concrete and asphalt for recycling at the Redwood City property. A portable crushing and screening plant converted the rubble to Aggregate Base (AB) Rock for sale to the public.
In 1983 Bell Marine Co. acquired a 20 acre property in downtown Sacramento, the former site of a sand and gravel pit. Once again, a screening and crushing plant was installed and another concrete recycling plant came on line.
When Mr. Bell sought a method of dust control for both his properties, he discovered lignin, a by-product of the paper manufacturing process. In addition to controlling dust, he discovered that it also provides road stabilization, reduced road maintenance.
Salmon Bay Barge Line, a sister company to Bell Marine, also owned by Mr. Bell, uses their tugboats and barges to bring lignin from paper mills on the West coast of Canada to ports in the US. Once landed in the States, Bell Lignin Sales and Bell Marine Co. combine efforts to sell the lignin as a wholesaler to distributors throughout the Western United States.
The lignin is sold for many uses including road binder, dust control, feed additives, pelletizing additives, and many more applications