Ahmed Adawey worked his way up at Koornstra & Co from order picker to inspector and assistant hall manager. And he has never stopped learning.
You really get to see everything here
If there is anyone who knows where everything is on the premises of Koornstra & Co, it is Ahmed Adawey, according to his colleagues. The born Egyptian came to the Netherlands in 2004. At Koornstra he started out as an order picker. Initially via an external packaging company from 2005 to 2009, but since 2009 Ahmed has been on a permanent contract in De Lier.
Meanwhile he has successfully followed a large number of professional courses, so that he can now call himself inspector and chief of the inspection department. “I am the point of contact and responsible for the inspection team”, says Ahmed, who shows what he needs to look out for with a few boxes of rejected tomatoes. “Look, these tomatoes are just a bit too pale and unripe, so they are not fit to be sold. It is up to us to make sure that we deliver first-rate quality and closely monitor the appearance of our fruit and vegetables.
Products must be healthy, unblemished and clean. And the labels must clearly state all the information.”
Happy where I am now
“I have been given lots of opportunities by the company. As I have been allowed to follow all the courses, I have really been able to work my way up here”, says Ahmed, who is also the assistant hall manager. “Just the other day we have visited a number of nursery-gardens with course participants, so that we have also been able to see there how the fruit is picked from the trees.” He is proud to tell the story. “I have worked hard for many years and I’m very happy where I am now. I haven’t stopped learning, though: I intend to follow two more course modules before long”, says the inhabitant of The Hague.
Ahmed walks up to a box of strawberries from Egypt, his native country. “It is always pleasant to hold something which has come from my home country.” The strawberries gloriously withstand his inspection. “They show just a tiny bit of white at the bottom and are nice and firm. Still, if I am honest, the taste of Dutch strawberries is better.”
“I have been given lots of opportunities by the company.”
– Ahmed Adawey
A real family feeling
“The atmosphere here is good”, adds Ahmed, who says he is feeling alright in De Lier. “It’s a real family feeling with great colleagues. And we learn a lot from each other.” Someone holding a position like his must be able to resist stress well, as an inspector, and keep a good overview. “And you should be able to solve problems easily and to delegate properly. We always communicate clearly with each other here, so that certainly helps.”