If you’ve been a Seventh-day Adventist for any length of time, you’re likely familiar with certain staples of Adventist food culture: Haystacks1, Special-K or Cottage Cheese Loaf2, Oatmeal Patties3, Wham-salad4 and a variety of other veggie-meat products from Worthington and Loma Linda to name a few.
If I asked you, “Which is better: Big Franks or Veja-Links?”5 you’d probably not only know what I’m talking about but would have a strong opinion one way or the other. Perhaps you’ve even bought your favorite in bulk at the ABC.6
But did you know that labels from canned Loma Linda products are redeemable for cash?
It’s true. Many years ago, when Loma Linda and Worthington were owned by Kellogg’s, a food label program was started that allowed churches to partner with conferences to raise funds for world mission projects. Labels were turned in at your local church, counted and reported to the conference office, and Kellogg’s would send the conference a check.
A few years ago, Kellogg’s sold the frozen products to Heritage Health Foods and the canned products to Atlantic Natural Foods. ANF continued to program, now called Labels Make Cents, but with a couple significant changes. Perhaps the most notable change was that they increased the value per label from 5 cents to 25 cents. (That’s five times the potential ministry impact from previous years!) Another change they made was that funds had to be used within the reporting conference. To honor the spirit of world mission, we decided to use the proceeds to support refugee ministries projects in Iowa and Missouri, such as tuition assistance for refugee children to receive a quality Adventist education.
Now ANF has made another big change.
Although we welcome continued participation with the conference, churches and schools now have the option to work directly with ANF. If your church or school has a worthy project of their own they wish to support, they are able to do so.
There are some limitations. During their first year participating directly with ANF, they’ll need to submit a W-9. Also, there is a minimum quantity of labels a church or school must collect before they can submit a redemption form, currently $100 (400 labels).
Any churches or schools that wish to do so may still partner with the Iowa-Missouri Conference, and proceeds will continue to support refugee ministries projects. Anyone is welcome to partner with us, but we especially encourage those unlikely to collect 400 labels (the current minimum) during any given year to continue helping us meet the needs of refugees living in Iowa and Missouri.
Check with your local church or school to see if they are already participating in the Labels Make Cents program. Corresponding submission forms may be downloaded below. Those working directly with ANF may submit a form at any time once they’ve reached the minimum. Those participating with the conference may turn in a form by December 31 of each year.
1Haystacks are a sort of vegetarian taco salad meets tostada, typically with Fritos or tortilla chips as a base, followed by layers of beans and a variety of other toppings such as lettuce, onion, tomato, cheese, salsa or sour cream. Fun fact: Haystacks were invented right here in Iowa-Missouri at Oak Park Academy by staff member Ella May Hartlein.
2Special-K Loaf or Cottage Cheese Loaf is a vegetarian casserole that combines Special-K cereal with cottage cheese, eggs, onions, celery, walnuts and seasoning to produce something that’s neither stuffing nor meatloaf but something in between—and quite delicious!
3Oatmeal Patties are a veggie patty made from oats and usually served in a bed of gravy.
4Wham-salad is a vegetarian version of ham-salad, using Worthington’s signature vegetarian ham substitute, Wham.
5Big Franks and Veja-Links are two varieties of vegetarian hotdog products by Worthington/Loma Linda. Big Franks are bigger and, well, better.
6ABC stands for Adventist Book Center, a bookstore that sells Bibles, Adventist literature, vegetarian food products and more. The Iowa-Missouri Conference currently operates ABCs in West Des Moines, Iowa; Centralia, Missouri; Climax Springs, Missouri; and Maple Grove, Minnesota (in partnership with the Minnesota Conference).