Nanny Knows Best

Nanny Knows Best
Dedicated to exposing, and resisting, the all pervasive nanny state that is corroding the way of life and the freedom of the people of Britain.

Wednesday, February 25, 2009

A Question of Training

Knife Training
I wandered into my local Somerfield the other day, to purchase some ham from the deli counter.

The counter, despite having ham and other meats on display, was closed.

I asked the service desk to open it, and was informed that this could not be done.

For why?

Despite there being staff in the shop, no one there was trained to use the meat cutter (I suspect this is a health and safety issue).

Despite stating that I had money to spend, Somerfield simply did not want to relieve me of it.

Why not just use a knife then?

I went elsewhere, and found a shop where the staff could operate a ham cutting machine (plug it in, place ham on cutter and turn it on).

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  1. I suspect the supermarket is afraid of being sued should any injury result from the use of the machine if an untrained person uses it......It is funny to think that in a supermarket there are so few people trained with boxes ticked to use the machine.
    Perhaps this is why so many supermarkets no longer have a deli counter and only sell pre-packaged plastic ham.

    In my town, we have a nice little Italian Deli and a Waitrose that sell proper cooked meats and they always have a bacon slicer operator on site.....Perhaps Ken you could offer some advice to the said supermarket chain on your blue blog.

    I actually have my own commercial meat slicer that I picked up on Ebay a few years ago.....I wonder if I need a license to own it.....Better phone local Nanny and ask her....On second thoughts, maybe not:-))

  2. Jacques3:46 PM

    Actually for once it seems like a reasonable response.
    While it is not difficult to use a meat slicer, I know from experience (not mine, but others I witnessed) that it is often as easy to mis-slice if you are distracted or inexperienced, and that is very not pretty.

    With knives it's even easier, unless trained to use the knives correctly, particularly with a large grade cut of meat like ham, which might not have a nice flat bottom, and being fatty tends to slide on the cutting board.

    The only thing I think they are really guilty of in this case is bad scheduling of the shifts, for which they merit losing your business perhaps. But complaining that they didn't have an unprepared substitute step in to the butcher's shoes would seem a bit heavy handed in this case.

  3. Jacques...

    truly, you are a model citizen.

  4. Does the EU know that hams are openly sold in the UK? How, exactly, are the practioners of certains faiths expected to deal with such provocations at the check out line?

    I sense a lawsuit in the offing.

  5. Jacques7:48 AM

    but why Officer?
    Since I'd rather not watch an inexperienced shophand slice a piece of his thumb or palm into my future pork sandwich? Or that I'd rather choose to carry my business to someplace that knows how to schedule their butchers and seemingly deserves my money more than Somerfield obviously thinks it does?

    I consider Nanny-ism where something might be imposed, like experienced butchers needing to take sensitivity training about how to deal with queasy customers or "respectfully" handle different meats to adhere to someone-or-other's religious beliefs, and, at least I think, quite another to not let the shelf-restocker or cashier slice the ham with an oversized oversharpened blade.

  6. Jacques,

    I thought that was what I said?

    Why are you "justifying" being a model citizen?

    X, SHMO.

  7. I worked on the meat counter of a supermarket as part of a summer job in the early 80s and even then nobody was allowed to use the meat slicer without training so this isn't really a new thing. Despite their ease of use they can 'bite' the inexperienced user so really all that Somerfield were doing was making sure that customers did not get a bit of extra meat in their sliced ham.