This month our fly-on-the-wall blogging takes us to the Quattro Foods office where Purchasing Manager, Steve Lock, tells us about life in the food manufacturing industry.
Q. Please can you describe your role at Quattro Foods.
Some of my tasks at Quattro Foods include finding the best possible prices for the ingredients and packaging that we use in our manufacturing and ensuring that orders are sent out to the correct suppliers with the correct information and on time. I always bear in mind that cheapest is not always best, although that would be nice!
I am also responsible for ensuring that all products are in stock and arrive on time. I keep the system updated with any price changes and find new suppliers of products to meet our demands currently and in the future. When looking at new suppliers I always have to consider their food safety accreditations, lead-times on orders, MOQ, delivery days into Quattro Foods and payment terms.
Q. How long have you been working at Quattro Foods?
Just over a year.
Q. Have you always had an interest in the food industry?
I haven’t always been a foodie. I started my working career in the Army where I was involved in supply and operations. A food role only came about once I left the forces about 11 years ago.
Q. What are your favourite aspects of the job?
My favourite aspect of the role is working out what is required for the following week’s cooking and getting suppliers to deliver specifically in line with our requirements. When it all comes together it feels good, a real achievement. At times, due to customers’ requirements, short notice orders are sent to suppliers. It can be a challenge to get the stock in on time, but it’s always rewarding.
Q. What do you find most rewarding about your job?
Many aspects of my job are rewarding. It’s an achievement to get all the ingredients here in time for production. If I can save money on buying from alternative suppliers and building good working relationships with my supply base, I feel successful.
Working with the team here at Quattro Foods is very enjoyable. I am still considered the new boy in town, but I feel I have settled in well and I’m enjoying life at Quattro Foods. It’s been made easier by the team around me. They pull together for a common goal. Everybody works hard, does their best to achieve good results and helps others, which is great.
Q. What four words describe Quattro as a business?
Customer focused, dedicated personnel.
Q. Do you see any major changes for the food manufacturing industry for the future?
Brexit could have a huge impact depending on how well as a country we are able to trade with other countries for goods and products. The closer we get to leaving, the worse pricing gets if the product originates from overseas.
I think more restaurants want pre-prepared food to spend more time on other tasks and to help with demand.