The chief executive of one of Britain’s biggest food manufacturers has made a direct urgent appeal for new workers as his company deals with unprecedented demand brought on by the coronavirus outbreak in the UK.
Ronald Kers, the CEO of 2 Sisters Food Group, took the decision to make the social media video appeal after the company decided to launch its first-ever nationwide recruitment campaign due to the level of vacancies across all its businesses.
Privately-owned 2 Sisters employs 20,000 in the UK and Europe, processes one-third of all chicken consumed in the UK, is the largest ready-meals producer and makes Fox’s Biscuits and other bakery goods. 75% of the UK population eat its food every day.
Kers said in his video post: “2 Sisters’ job is literally to feed the nation. Getting food to people has never been so important. As we come together as a country to fight the coronavirus, we need everybody’s help to keep our factories running.
“We urgently need people so we can keep delivering a full range of products to supermarkets across the country. We are recruiting now for a wide range of factory and logistics jobs up and down the country. Please join us and help feed the nation.”
2 Sisters face the doubly-difficult challenge of demand for food from the UK public at levels never seen before, coupled with a crisis which dictates higher than usual rates of staff absenteeism for longer periods due to the need for self-isolation.
Kers, the former global CEO of Muller, added: “This has brought about an urgent need for vacancies, both permanent and temporary roles. We have seen this across food and retail. We are hopeful that given the devastating effect this current crisis has had on the leisure and hospitality sectors, we can reach out to these people and persuade them that a career in the food industry can be both fulfilling and enjoyable.”
Last week all UK food sector workers were designated ‘key worker’ status by government, which meant if they were fit and well they could work as normal
The critical status designation then led to some confusion when government texts were sent to millions of workers with the key message “stay at home”.
It is understood food industry bodies lobbied Defra strongly following the mixed messaging, prompting Minister George Eustice to write to bosses of all sector companies with a ‘thank you’ message, saluting the “hidden heroes” of the coronavirus pandemic.
Ronald Kers’ video message can be seen at http://www.2sfg.com/careers/feed-the-nation/