Thursday, April 24, 2014

Weston gets $1 million for cookie plant

It feels like my pocket has been picked by one of the province's richest families.

The Ontario government has handed $1 million to the George Weston Ltd. to invest in Colonial Cookies of Cambridge.

I find this totally frustrating. It's the Weston Group that pushed Colonial into bankruptcy after it lost $6.8 million in 2010.

Loblaws supermarket chain squeezed Colonial so hard on cookies for its President's Choice line and other products that the company lost $6.8 million in 2010 and was forced into bankruptcy.

So the Weston Group bought Colonial out of bankruptcy in February, 2011.

It makes cookies for Loblaws, but employs only about 200 now, down from 370 when Colonial was healthy.

Now George Weston Ltd. is investing $12 million to open a new line that will triple production. It says employment will increase, but doesn't even hint at how many might be hired.

Meanwhile the Weston Group has found all kinds of money to buy the Shopper's Drug Mart chain, increasing its clout over suppliers in the food business.

And as a taxpayer, I am chipping in for the $1 million gifted to these billionaires. 

It's not right. It's not fair. And this kind of corporate welfare needs to stop.