Weston Food Processing Depositers, Inc. says its food processors are getting in line to get credit from the Federal Government’s food stamp program.
The credit is designed to help those businesses pay for their workers’ health care and retirement benefits.
Weston told Engadge that it had not received any complaints about its workers’ compensation coverage.
But some are concerned the credit could help those companies.
“I just want to be sure that our customers get what they’re entitled to, that they’re not getting some extra money,” said Joe Dolan, president of Weston Foods, which is owned by Weston’s parent company, Weston Group, in a phone interview.
Weston has been approved to receive $4,000 in food stamp credit in a program that allows some low-income families to qualify for a small increase in their food stamp benefit, which currently is $250 a month.
Weston’s food processing depositor program is meant to help people who are food insecure or working part-time to pay for basic living expenses.
Weston says it has more than 3,000 food processing workers in its region, and the company expects to have a permanent workforce of more than 2,000.
Dolan said he’s hopeful that Weston will receive the $4 million in food stamps it needs, adding that the credit is a necessary part of Weston’s long-term plan to become more self-sufficient.
“The food stamp money that is there will go to paying our workers,” he said.
Weston Foods also says it expects to get the credit when the Food and Drug Administration reviews its application.
Weston declined to disclose the amount of its food stamp benefits or what type of workers are eligible.
In a statement, the Food & Drug Administration says it does not comment on food stamp applications.
Weston said it would be “appropriate” to provide more information on its application if the FDA makes a decision on it in the coming months.
Dreyer Foods, Inc., which operates Weston Foods’ Weston Foods food processing facilities, said it has received $8,400 in food-stamp credits, or $4.7 million in total, for food processing in the last six months.
The company has said its food processing deposit program has helped the company increase production capacity and improve its customer experience.
“As we look to expand our capacity and expand our operations, we have been able to apply for and receive food stamp credits through the Weston Food Processing Depository Program,” said Doug Dreyers, president and CEO of Dreyering Food Services, in an email.
“We expect to be able to offer food stamp assistance in the future.”
Dreyes said the company’s current food-processing operations have expanded capacity and increased customer satisfaction.
The Weston Food processing depository program, known as Weston’s Food Deposit Program, helps companies who do not have access to traditional food stamp programs apply for food stamp subsidies to pay their workers.
Weston spokesman Mark Kloer told Engage that Weston’s processing depositories are part of a broader program designed to provide workers with health insurance benefits, food stamps, unemployment benefits and other support for their families.
Weston, a nonprofit company with about 100 employees, is based in the Denver suburb of Weston, where Weston has a processing facility.
Weston Group’s Weston Foods and Dreyery’s food-distribution business are separate companies.
Weston spokeswoman Julie Mettler said the Weston group has been in touch with the Federal Agriculture Department about the food stamp eligibility of the food-processor business.
The agency will evaluate Weston’s application to see if it is eligible for the Weston food-processing depository, she said.
Dwayne Dees is a producer and owner of Weston Food, which has been receiving food stamp payments for the past three years.
He told Engagge that Weston Foods has had a very positive response to Weston’s request.
“Weston has been very helpful in helping us out in our process, helping us get our operations running,” he explained.
“There have been many times when we have had people who have gone in and made a purchase and the money that we get back is amazing.
The people that have been helping us with that are really, really nice people.”
The Weston Group said in a statement that Weston has received food stamp funds through Weston’s Depository and Weston’s Business Solutions programs, and that Weston is currently in the process of obtaining $1 million in the program.
“While the food and food-related businesses in Weston are receiving some of the benefits provided by the Weston Group food-services program, Weston Foods continues to be responsible for providing its workers with food assistance and unemployment benefits,” the company said.
It said Weston Foods employees are eligible for benefits under the Weston business-services programs and are expected to receive those benefits in the near future.
“Our Weston Food Depository program is designed for Weston Food Services to assist in providing workers with the necessary support