SK People – Chris Collins
If there’s anything you need to know about an onion bhaji, Chris Collins is your man.
That’s because as part of his role as a Team Leader on the production line at our South Bank site, he is responsible for ensuring the bhaji lines run smoothly.
When you consider we produce 200,000 bhajis a day, you will understand why his role is so important.
He’s become so knowledgeable that if you lined up all the bhajis we do for our supermarket customers, based on the look, taste and smell, he would be able to tell you exactly which bhaji is sold in which supermarket.
Chris’s day starts at 4.45am when his alarm goes off and he is at South Bank for 5.30am.
He says: “When I get in I check the paperwork, gather all the ingredients, check the lines and ensure the staff are ready for the day ahead.
“The ingredients for the bhajis depend on the specification we receive from the customer, so we have to get the measurements exactly right.
“I can now do most of the measurements in my head, although I do have my trusted calculator to fall back on as well.”
When he’s not working, Chris enjoys spending time with his partner and their children, but he admits after four days of 12-hour shifts, an onion bhaji is not the first thing he craves when they are cooking at home or eating out.
He says: “When you have been working with them all day, it’s fair to say I look forward to something a bit different, but I wouldn’t change anything because I love my job.
“You meet so many different people with different characters and cultures and there’s good opportunities to progress.
“I started as agency staff 18 months ago and after only three weeks I was offered a permanent role as a team leader; there’s not many places where that would happen!”