I was of the opinion that not many BIG brands would offer or invite us to their kitchen. This may be for various reasons – they do not want to reveal their secrets or they are not comfortable inviting their customers inside the most secured place which is tagged EXCLUSIVE which my leave all the customers in dark.
I was totally surprised when I was invited for the KFCkitchentours and what was even more surprising was when I learned the fact that they offer it the customers who wanted to see their kitchen. I told them it is “A-M-A-Z-I-N-G”
This event was organized in KFC outlet in Forum Vijaya Mall,Vadapalani. Five of us Balaji Vijayaraghavan, Vijayalakshmi, Gunavathy Jain, Geetha Sridhar and I reached the venue by around 10:45 since the event was to begin at 11AM on 24th July.
Even before us, the officials Mr.Satender Singh,Operations Manager and Mr Amit Dev Thapa,Area Manager of Yum Foods which handles KFC, Pizza Hut and Tacobell India were present. We were given a warm welcome and were asked to take our seats before the event could begin. Would we keep quiet? We went for few selfies.
This is a real special pic because I new both of them for a while. While Mr.Balaji Vijayaraghavan(@mkvbalu) has his own Social Media Company and has actively participated in Social Media Week, TEDxMylapore Sessions, MS. Geetha Sridhar(@geetusri_ is an excellent cook who has appeared in many television cookery programs with biggies like Mr.Sanjeev Kapoor and Mr.Vikas Khanna. What more weight-age could this event add?? She also has does You Tube Videos for Sanjeev Kapoor’s cookery and was in Top 30 of Master Chef India Program.
The other two were Twitter Influencers – Mrs Vijayalakshmi ( @chennaimagal) and Ghun Jain (@ghunjain) who were into Social Media activities and three of the women started having a blast as there were lot of fun quotient attached to the event. The above click testifies the same.
They had been invited to take a kitchen tour firstly. Balaji and I started tweeting about the event and to our surprise we found the hashtag #KFCkitchentours was already trending. We were also asked to give our menu which we said we would do it after cming back rom our tour 🙂
While Mr.Satender Singh took Women Invitees to the Kitchen,Balaji and I had a quick chat with Area Manager Mr.Amit Dev Thapa and he kindly agreed for a Selfie with us. We were surprised to know lot of info from him regarding his association with the company which was a good 17 years and also about the company as to how they tackle crisis and negative feedback. He also was kind enough to ask us about the Positives and Negatives of the brand. I never had any Negatives to say. Mr Balaji Vijayaraghavan surprised us by saying that he was called “KFC Iyengar”. By the time, the women invitees came out and it is our turn to venture into the kitchen.
We were given caps before entering the kitchen as a precautionary measure and Mr.Satender Singh took a Selfie with us.
What I saw inside the kitchen were unbelievable. They re more than amazing is what I can say. The excerpts:
1. Hands are washed with hand cleaner with warm water on entering. They do not use hand drier as it may re-circulate the germs and hence they use hand napkins. After this hand sanitizers were used.
2. Vegetarian and Non-Vegetarian have separate counters and storage bins. Even the sinks are separate for vegetarian and non-vegetarian.
3. What was even more appealing was handle that was used to enter the freezer – they were color coded so that vegetarian use the green colored handle and Non-Vegetarian uses the other.
4. Unlike other brands, processed chicken is not used in KFC but chilled chicken and it is kept in freezer which is chilled up to -14 degrees Celsius.
5. The chicken is fried at 170 degrees leaving no room for any survival of any microbes.
6. The oil is changed frequently.
7. There is a discard date including the time for every food item and post which they are not sold to the public but discarded. It is not even given for charity which shows how much KFC cares about the quality.
8.The ultimate is this – the vessels are cleaned in a detergent post which it is sanitized in a solution. They arrive at the power of the solution with the help of a Special Paper which has 5 color codes and based on the color, the sanitizer solution is also changed.
9. The brand does not allow anyone who is sick as they may spread it to others including other staffs and they let them take off until they are completely fit to resume back to work.
10. There is also a recreation room with a LED TV and Lockers and change room which motivates the workers to excel.
11. Everyone including the Operations Manager knows how to make the food items and if need be, they chip-in and just when we being briefed about this, we saw the Store Manager entering the kitchen to work on food preparation. AMAZING!!!
We came out. It is lunch time for us. We started placing our orders.
We all ordered what ever we wanted. We saw the officials Mr.Satender Singh and Mr Amit Dev Thapa in action, conversing with us.
Our food arrived in few minutes. Here is my order 🙂
Chocolate Krushers, Burger, Finger Fries and Chicken. All these were YUMMY as usual 🙂
Geetha Sridhar liked the finger fries so much that she gave a cute pose with it.
Now she had a competitor in the form of Ghun Jain who posed with ice-cream.
Except Vijaya Lakshmi and I, the other 3 were vegetarian. Ghun Jain had reservations earlier about all the brands which served Non-Veg but was changed after the kitchen tour that she tweeted inviting all her Jain Friends to give a try in KFC. That is the REAL SUCCESS of the Brand, I would say!!!
We ended it with a happy note with a Groupfie….