Life at the Kiwi Butcher Shop #1 Meet the Team
With our new website it gives us a chance to tell you a little more about us, our team and what goes on in the butchery in general. An introduction to the team sort of a thing.
Most of us have been around a long time.... And when i say a long time, Butcher Peter has been with the shop since he was an apprentice 52 years ago, which is a fair bit of experience and some fantastic stories which I'll share with you throughout the blogs. Peter always has a joke, saying or some story that will give you a laugh. He's smiley and friendly and often found out the front in the retail regaling customers with his stories or chatting with mates. We figure after this many years, he's earned the right for extended chin wags on the job.
His son Butcher Stephen has been in the shop since he was 11. Dad roped him into cleaning dishes for the shop and from there he did his apprenticeship and now he runs the Kiwi Butcher, managing both the wholesale and the retail sides of the shop. Stephen is generally the ideas man, coming up with new concepts, ways to operate, business opportunities and is the driving force behind all the changes that we have been making recently. We'll fill you in on more about those changes later in the blogs. He has a rather stern countenance and makes you think he might be someone you wouldn't want to run into in a dark alley, but in truth, he's a straight shooter, doesn't suffer fools gladly and actually has a soft side.... (Sssh....Don't tell everyone) And if you didn't know already he lives to go fishing.
Grandson/Nephew - Butcher Jamie, heads up the Wholesale side of the butchery. I'm going to have to investigate further as to when and how he started out in the shop, but i think i can safely say no pressure tactics were used in engaging his employment. Nobody has yet mentioned anything about tieing him up with butchers' twine and threatening to tickle him with a sausage casing for compliance. Jamie is the strong silent type, gets things done and can be found in the carpark ready to drag you when he's driving the forklift.
Butcher Kayla started out doing the wash up as a teenager and she quickly moved through to the front of the shop, serving customers and doing the meat packing. Kayla took a years break from the shop to venture into farming and decided butchery was where she wanted to be. So back she came and last year she finished her 2.5 year apprenticeship and we couldn't be more wrapt! Her hard work and dedication saw her through. Awesome effort - And now she can be found mostly dedicated to the Wholesale side of the Butchery, though she does moonlight out front in the Retail side of the shop on Monday and Tuesday nights.
Butcher Pat is also family and was with the Shop from '2003 to '2006'. After a stint in his own butchery and then working for a online retailer, he arrived back last year to take care of the Retail butchery for us. If you can't find what you are looking for, Pat will cut it for you or order it for you. He's the tall, dark and sometimes whiskered bloke at the bench in the far 'corner' of the shop. As our packer Cecilia would say .... The naughty corner. Sadly Pat is relegated there often, head down, looking sheepish, so do say hi as you pass him!
Our Smallgoods maker Allen is a very welcome and recent addition to the team. He came to us last year with no knowledge and no previous sausage making history and he now helps us churn out over thousands of kilos a week of our Award Winning Sausages, Saveloys and Precooks. Hats off to him for being a quick study! Allen is a young gun, who is here, there and everywhere doing whatever needs to be done when he's not frantically linking sausages as they come hurling out . If you need a hand, Allen's your bloke. We are seriously considering changing his uniform shirt to a superman one.
Don is another one of the team who has worked with us previously and is back as our driver with his trusty steed - The Kiwi Butcher Minivan. Don is the sweetheart of the team, so thoughtful, so prompt, so reliable, so responsible. We couldn't have a better bloke on the road or as the face of the shop as he runs about town delivering to our Wholesale customers and our Retail customers who place orders over $40. Don is a bloke who goes that extra mile.... literally.
Cecilia is our meat packing extraordinaire. She can marinade, dice chicken and crumb sausages like nobody's business. We call her the oracle, how she knows all the hundreds of plu numbers for the packing machine off the top of her head is anybody's guess. She may be tiny but she's a lethal weapon for us in preparing and traying all the meat for the shop, she's even got the butchers in line ie. Butcher Pat - Telling him to get back in the naughty corner.
Raewyn our meat packing, customer service specialist and affectionately, our resident mother hen. She officially retired over a year ago and is also back organising and doing what she does best for us packing, cleaning, serving you and handing out lollipops to our Junior shoppers. This is a lady who doesn't like to sit still. She has a heart of gold, and can insult you with grin on her face - And you will probably laugh along with her! She makes sure everyone is insulted equally, staff and customers alike. Also one to send Butcher Pat to his corner....especially when he calls her Grandma! Don't be surprised even if you are a customer to be told, "Come here child!" Our advice would be to follow her instructions.
Paddy is our new kid on the block but she's fit right in and is another weapon in our arsenal in customer service out in the Retail. She's still learning the ropes, which she's managing at a rapid pace of knots! And don't worry kids, she knows where we hide the lollipops. No discernible habits as yet - Other than being super friendly, if she were in charge Butcher Pat would probably be let out of his corner.
And then there's me. Amber, the resident 'gopher/gofer' of the butchery. I can generally be found going fer this and going fer that all over town and around the butchery. Sometimes you'll find me serving.... when i'm not upstairs doing the accounting, marketing or looking for new lines of rubs/sauces/products to stock in the butchery. Though I often wonder how it is i came to be in charge of the accounting, having had no previous experience. But we've just installed a new fandangled online accounting system, so i shouldn't be able to go too far wrong, but i'm wondering if i should mention that i only just passed School C Maths!
So from all of us here... 'It's nice to Meat you!"