KLN preps for next wave of workers
KLN Family Brands will be bringing another group of temporary foreign workers to pick up shifts at its Barrel O' Fun Snack Foods plant, and this time the workers will be housed in Perham.
KLN Family Brands will be bringing another group of temporary foreign workers to pick up shifts at its Barrel O’ Fun Snack Foods plant, and this time the workers will be housed in Perham.
Last summer, KLN partnered with a program called Global Workforce to bring in a group of 60 foreign workers from July through December – a first for the company, which has been struggling with an ongoing worker shortage.
Due to a lack of housing in Perham, that first group lived in a motel in Wadena and was bussed to town for work. KLN wanted to change that situation before the next wave of foreign workers arrived. Company and city leaders have said that housing the workers in Perham is a better economic option for both KLN and the city.
With the next Global Workforce group scheduled to arrive in Perham on March 1, KLN is working fast to provide temporary housing for them.
Fred Sailer, who leads recruitment at KLN, said the company is currently interviewing candidates through Global Workforce, and many of those who were here before are expected to return with the next group.
According to a memo to city councilors from Chuck Johnson, Perham’s economic development director, KLN will be erecting four temporary workforce housing structures at Perham’s former city garage site, which KLN purchased last fall. The company is currently prepping the site for the structures, pouring concrete pedestals and installing service lines for water and sewer.
The four units, which Sailer said were rolling off the assembly lines as of Monday, are expected to be set up sometime between February 15 and 26, and will be move-in ready by March, when the foreign workers arrive.
The living spaces are about the size of a college dorm, Johnson’s memo states, and will have double occupancy.
Under the city ordinance, the structures can be in place for a maximum of five years, which matches the 5-year agreement KLN has entered into with Global Workforce.