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Church feeds Gilster-Mary Lee workers to honor Labor Day

  • Members of Chester's Free Baptist Church serve meals to workers at the Chester Gilster-Mary Lee facility. Pastor Mike Fogerson said it was a way to celebrate Labor Day, by doing something nice for one of the largest work forces in the community.

    Members of Chester's Free Baptist Church serve meals to workers at the Chester Gilster-Mary Lee facility. Pastor Mike Fogerson said it was a way to celebrate Labor Day, by doing something nice for one of the largest work forces in the community.
    Don Berry photos

  • Members of Chester's Free Baptist Church serve meals to workers at the Chester Gilster-Mary Lee facility. Pastor Mike Fogerson said it was a way to celebrate Labor Day, by doing something nice for one of the largest work forces in the community.

    Members of Chester's Free Baptist Church serve meals to workers at the Chester Gilster-Mary Lee facility. Pastor Mike Fogerson said it was a way to celebrate Labor Day, by doing something nice for one of the largest work forces in the community.
    Don Berry photow

  • Members of Chester's Free Baptist Church serve meals to workers at the Chester Gilster-Mary Lee facility. Pastor Mike Fogerson said it was a way to celebrate Labor Day, by doing something nice for one of the largest work forces in the community.

    Members of Chester's Free Baptist Church serve meals to workers at the Chester Gilster-Mary Lee facility. Pastor Mike Fogerson said it was a way to celebrate Labor Day, by doing something nice for one of the largest work forces in the community.
    Don Berry photos

  • Members of Chester's Free Baptist Church serve meals to workers at the Chester Gilster-Mary Lee facility. Pastor Mike Fogerson said it was a way to celebrate Labor Day, by doing something nice for one of the largest work forces in the community.

    Members of Chester's Free Baptist Church serve meals to workers at the Chester Gilster-Mary Lee facility. Pastor Mike Fogerson said it was a way to celebrate Labor Day, by doing something nice for one of the largest work forces in the community.
    Don Berry photos

 
By Don Berry
Contributing Writer
updated: 9/5/2018 9:36 AM

Members of Chester's Free Baptist Church honored Labor Day by providing meals to workers at one of Chester's largest employers, Gilster-Mary Lee.

Pastor Mike Fogerson his congregation in feeding lunch to all the employees of Gilster-Mary Lee's two locations on August 28 and 29. Church volunteer fed all three shifts at the Shredded Wheat plant on Route 3 and the Cake Mix plant in the middle of town.

Fogerson came up with idea as a way to celebrate Labor Day, by doing something nice for one of the largest work forces in the community. Several members stepped up and donated the cost of the materials and teams of individuals signed up to prepare the food, deliver and serve it to each shift at their lunch breaks. They thanked and served each employee in the plant's dining rooms.

The meal consisted of hot dogs, potato chips, soft drinks and homemade cupcakes. The task was enjoyed by the volunteers and employees as they received the meal.

Gilster-Mary Lee is one of the leading private label food manufacturers in the United States. Its origin can be traced to a Milling Company started in 1895. The main location in the center of town was once a former shoe factory and hosiery mill, the company began operating from the location 60 years ago.

Gilster employs around 3,000 employees in 14 different manufacturing plants in four states. The two Chester plants employ over 500.

The company today produces over 8,000 items for nearly 500 different private label food brands and they also have their own Hospitality label. They produce cake mixes, ready-to-use frosting, cereals, pasta, powered drink mixes, and microwave popcorn. In 2016, the company was ranked 29th in the top 150 Privately Held Companies, according to a list released by the St. Louis Business Journal.