Niagara Pallet becomes Niagara’s 9th Certified Living Wage Employer

The Niagara Poverty Reduction Network is pleased to announce that Niagara Pallet has become Niagara’s 9th certified Living Wage Employer.

Niagara Pallet started in 1993 and is owned by the Vrugteveen family. They are a leading manufacturer, seller and recycler of pallets and shipping materials. Their Smithville-based operations are housed in a 23,000 square foot building with an 18,000 square foot addition opening soon. This is the first phase of a significant expansion plan scheduled over the next five years.

“We are currently experiencing steady growth and are looking for people to join our company. This is one of the reasons we have decided to become a certified Living Wage employer. We hope in doing so that we will be able to retain employees and attract higher caliber candidates who will aid in our growth. Niagara Pallet is looking for people who wanta career, not just a job”, says Daryl Crowder, Operations Manager at Niagara Pallet.Niagara Pallet presently employs 61 people, with almost all being full time permanent employees, and is hosting a job fair on January 19th to fill a variety of positions. Visit for more information.

“A living wage reflects what earners need to be paid based on the actual costs of living and being included in the community,” says Melenie Neamtz, Vice-Chair of the Niagara Poverty Reduction Network. A living wage is not the same as the legislated minimum wage. It is a voluntary commitment that employers can make to compensate directly-employed and contract-employed full-time and part-time workers. The 2018 living wage for Niagara region has been calculated to be $17.99/hour.

Niagara-area employers who are interested in becoming Living Wage certified can contact the Ontario Living Wage Network for more information at

The Niagara Poverty Reduction Network is a collective of over 30 agencies and individuals working to wipe outpoverty in Niagara through education, collaboration, and advocacy to address poverty’s root causes.