Walmart is the single biggest beneficiary of food stamps in the U.S., as its unbeatable prices help struggling families make ends meet. But Walmart’s cost-cutting measures negatively impact one group in particular: its workers. Low wages, inadequate benefits and poor work environments have made Walmart the center of ongoing national criticism. But can Walmart improve conditions for its employees without hiking up its much-welcomed low prices?
According to economists: yes. Most of Walmart’s staggering profits — $17 billion in 2013, and $13 billion from food stamps alone — are spent on expanding the company and consolidating its ownership. At the same time, it pays so little that it has become the company with the most employees on food stamps. The reality is all too clear: while Walmart makes billions providing rock-bottom prices to low-income families, it does little to help out its own workers.