Fondi-Metal Srl: From Sicilian dealers to manufacturers of secondary raw materials

With a long history as a family-run concern, Fondi Metal is located in the industrial area of Carini, a few kilometres from Palermo. We interviewed owners Baldassarre Marino, his son Paolo and his son-in-law Piero, pioneers in metal recycling in Sicily.

Strongly connected to the land and to the history of the entrepreneurial spring in our peninsula from the post-war period to today, Fondi Metal was able to face and overcome all the changes that, over the years, have characterised the scrap recovery sector.

By choosing a path in direct contrast with those of other Sicilian colleagues, the company has recently decided to invest in new technologies for the enhancement of its metal scrap. What were the reasons that led Fondi Metal to make this decision?


Hello Mr. Baldassarre, could you tell us about your company and your history?

Baldassare: “Our business is built on a long family tradition and Fondi-Metal is the culmination of almost 80 years of work. From a very young age I began working as a scrap dealer alongside my grandfather and my father. We were mainly scrap dealers and dealt with the purchase, manual sorting and resale activities. The changes in the sector, combined with labour costs over the years, have led us to focus on certain types of waste and shift operating areas. This is why in the nineties Fondi-Metal was founded in Carini, in the province of Palermo.

Today the Fondi-Metal business is still managed by our family, however the business is completely renewed and we deal with the processing of metal and non-metal scrap. We purchase the waste to be recycled directly from producers or other dealers who, in turn, are supplied from various industrial, artisanal and commercial enterprises. We place them on the recycling line that takes care of everything, from volumetric reduction to sorting – which thankfully is no longer manual but fully automated – up to the selection of the smallest metal parts to be valorised.

Our flagship product is aluminium, which is fed into the Panizzolo recycling plant, to obtain a refined and high quality material, characteristics that allow us to sell a “furnace-ready” product directly to foundries in Central and Northern Italy. We sell other types of ferrous scrap directly to Acciaierie di Sicilia.”

Why did you choose a Panizzolo recycling plant?

Paolo: “I discovered Panizzolo machines at a fair and, intrigued, I did further research online, visiting your website and watching the videos on your YouTube profile. Immediately interested, I contacted the company for an initial quote. We purchased the first Panizzolo metal scrap recycling plant, consisting of a Flex 500 Mobile hammermill and an eddy current separator. A significant trait of this machine was the low energy consumption with respect to hourly production. Thanks to its 90 kW motor we are able to achieve productivity that can reach up to 3.5 tons/h of finished product. This way we are able to significantly increase the profitability of aluminium compared to traditional trade.

We also chose your mill because we wished to expand our production range and bring immediate innovation to our work. Consider that in Sicily there are very few of us who think the future lies in the recycling of scrap and not in trade. Together with the mill we also purchased two types of interchangeable cradles, one more suitable for the recycling of aluminium profiles or in any case of semi-soft materials, and the other dedicated to aluminium casings.

What do you think of the plant you are currently using?

Piero: “After the training provided by your technicians, we immediately found that the machine is easy to use and service. The product output is undoubtedly of high quality, which allows us to recycle and sell materials directly to foundries as a secondary raw material.

Another point in favour: Given the distance between our business and the Panizzolo headquarters, it was essential to choose a partner able to provide remote assistance. You have not disappointed us, always showing immediate availability and plenty of problem solving skills. We were therefore able to calibrate the machine remotely and monitor it in the best possible way thanks to the Panizzolo management and control software.”


What do you expect in the future? What are your goals?

Baldassarre: “We come from years that have marked a turning point in our business, we want to continue on this path, steering more and more towards the recycling of aluminium. Our main goal is to increase production. In Sicily there are few among us that offer this type of service and the market is still new. We will certainly need to expand our machine inventory, an excellent opportunity for a new collaboration with Panizzolo technicians.”