East Texas company provides unique products nationwide - KLTV.com-Tyler, Longview, Jacksonville, Texas | ETX News

East Texas company provides unique products nationwide

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© (Source: Venison Joe's) © (Source: Venison Joe's)

An East Texas business is doing their part to make sure jobs stay in their community

Venison Joe's in Van is an all natural dog treat and chew company that distributes nationwide, but their bigger mission is to provide jobs to local citizens.

"It started as a company that wanted to provide jobs and opportunities for people in the city of Van, rather then have them leave the city of Van and that sort of thing," Owner Tom Reagan said.

The company began as a small internet company at Tom Regan's kitchen table, in a time when the economy was tanking and no new businesses were starting.

"When we started this company, everyone told me I was crazy because that was about the time that things really started to go south, but I had enough confidence in the business plan and in the alternative protein chew we had started that I thought the company was going to succeed," Reagan said.

Venison Joe's sells all natural dog chews and bones of elk, bison and beef online and to distributors in 43 states and in Canada.

"It provided us the opportunity to stimulate the economy, if we could in the United States, as well as provide people with jobs and keep them busy right here in our own home town," Reagan said.

One of those people is Jamie Tunnell, Venison Joe's office manager for the past year.

"I was searching Craig's List and I found a posting about a dog treat company in Van. I thought there is no way," Tunnell said.

However, to Tunnell's surprise, there actually was a new company in Van offering jobs. Now Tunnell has become an intercate part of the company.

"I feel a part of ownership in it cause I've seen everything from boxes being designed to venison snack bags being designed to growing our distribution from 5 states to 43 states. It's almost an adrenalin rush, like we did this, in like 11 months. How cool is this?" Tunnell said.

As the company grows, it allows Reagan to hire more people in the community.

"We're trying to grow our business, not because our company is trying to take over the dog bone industry in the world, but because were trying to put our people back to work. There are a lot of people in the city of Van that could use an extra job or use the revenue. We try to provide that for them and that's kind of the big idea of why were here," Reagan said.

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