Morrison’s has invested £500,000 in transforming its store into a craft skills academy.
The revamped store, which was officially launched on Wednesday, now champions the traditional skills of its staff who work in the butchers, bakers and fishmongers sections of the store. The apprenticeship scheme takes place in the store.
The craft skills academy has created two jobs and 22 staff have been trained in food and wine matching, so they can recommend good combinations to customers.
Bakery manager Paula Ashby, who has worked at the Grantham store for 17 years after completing her bakery apprenticehsip there, says that the changes in store have opened up the butchers and bakers counters so that customers can see staff at work.
Paula said: “A lot of the skills I use on a daily basis are the same as when I first started out. We do a lot of hand moulding which is the traditional way of making bread.
“I think that learning on the job from someone who really knows what they’re doing is the best experience you can get and it’s good to know that the craft skills academy will encourage other people to learn a proper trade and keep the traditions going.
“The investment in the store has meant that we’ve opened up the counter and put the moulding table right at the front so customers can see us in action.”.
“It’s good to know that the craft skills academy will encourage other people to learn a proper trade and keep the traditions going.”
As part of the transformation, Morrisons has re-vamped the interior of the store which boasts the latest in misting technology to keep fruit and vegetables fresher for longer, a new flower shop, pizza counter and a wider choice of fruit and vegetables including some more unusual lines like kohlrabi, white beetroot and purple potatoes.
Store manager Tom Miller says: “The transformation of the store is incredible and I think that the Craft Skills Academy is a great way to encourage the uptake of traditional skills. We have more skilled craftsmen and women on our counters than any other supermarket and pride ourselves on the knowledge and advice that they can offer to customers.
“It’s great to see young people learning a trade. All of our staff have benefited from training which in-turn benefits our customers as we can offer the best advice and tips on how to prepare and cook the food we sell.
“Everyone’s purse strings are stretched at the minute so it’s important for our specialists to help customers make the most of their weekly shop with advice on the best value cuts of meat or ideas on what to do with leftovers - we’d definitely encourage people to approach the counters and tap into their knowledge.”