We are hiring! Looking for an awesome Sous Chef to join the Real Junk Food Mcr team!

Role:              Sous Chef
Hours:          Full time (40 – 50 hours per week) – shifts / hours negotiable. Will consider job share
Rate:              £8.45 per hour – Real Junk Food Mcr is committed to being a Real Living Wage Employer
Contract:     Initial 12 month contract, with 3 month probationary period
Holidays:     25 days holiday per annum (pro rata)

We’re recruiting for the position of Sous Chef to work alongside our amazing Head Chef in a creative role requiring someone who can quickly develop a range of amazing dishes entirely from food that would otherwise go to waste.

The Real Junk Food Project Manchester is an innovative, not-for-profit project setting up in Manchester City Centre. The project sources perfectly edible food that supermarkets, wholesalers, restaurants and other food businesses would send to waste; creates amazing dishes; and serves them to anyone and everyone on a pay-as-you-feel basis. The job is incredibly varied including lunch services, fine dining evenings, and a range of pop-up events from buffets to wedding feasts.

As Sous Chef you will have a real passion for food and will be a self-starter with excellent practical food knowledge. This is a demanding role – each day’s menu will need to be created based on available produce – so the ability to keep a cool head, in a hot kitchen, is an absolute must.

Our ideal candidate is an excellent communicator who loves working in a team and wants to teach and include others, while learning along the way. Some of the kitchen and front of house team will be volunteers who are willing but not necessarily skilled.

If you are looking for a chance to make a real difference in this world, have a creative flair and want to join a highly motivated, ethical team with a clear mission, this position will provide an excellent opportunity to thrive and develop. If you’re passionate about food, reducing food waste and putting people before profits, we’d love to hear from you.

See full Job Description below for more detail.

Application Process

To apply for this role, please send your CV with a letter no more than 2 sides long explaining how you feel you meet the job description to matt@realjunkfoodmanchester.co.uk.

Deadline for applications is 5pm on Thursday 27th July. Interviews will be held on Friday 4th August, please keep the date free. We would like the successful applicant to start as soon as possible following interview, but will honour any notice periods owed to previous employers.

We will respond to everyone who applies, regardless of whether you are shortlisted for interview, because we just think that’s the nice thing to do.



Job title:                Sous Chef – The Real Junk Food Project Manchester
Responsible to:  Head Chef
Liaise with:          Head Chef, Project Directors, Front of House Manager, Volunteer Coordinator, Volunteers

The Project and the Role

Real Junk Food Manchester is an innovative social enterprise opening Manchester’s first waste food pay-as-you-feel restaurant. The project sources food that would otherwise go to waste from supermarkets, wholesalers, and other sources, creates amazing meals, and serves them to anyone and everyone on a pay-as-you-feel basis.

This is not a food bank; at its heart the project is about waste and sustainability, highlighting the astounding amount of perfectly edible food that goes to waste at every point in our food chain. The project aims to rescue as much wasted food as possible, and do the lowest carbon thing we can with it – feed bellies not bins. The project also has a strong ethical base, fighting for equal access to good food for all, and campaigning for changes that help our environment and our communities, and make our food system more fair.

Since we started in May 2014 we have been a pop-up project, rescuing food destined for the bin and using it to make meals for a variety of audiences. In that time we have catered weddings and gala fundraising dinners, taught cooking lessons, and supported people in severe food poverty. The project demonstrates that the vast majority of food that is wasted in the UK is perfectly edible by turning it into amazing dishes for everyone.

All of our meals are served on a pay-as-you-feel basis because we feel strongly that everyone has the right to good food, and we work hard to make our project inclusive and accessible to all. All of the ingredients we use are 100% food that would have otherwise gone to waste – no exceptions. The project is a great mix of practical and political and we campaign strongly through social media for changes to our food system.

We are moving into a new phase of our project, setting up Manchester’s first “waste food” restaurant in the heart of the city centre. Our aim is to create a cool city centre eatery that attracts a wide range of customers, where all of the meals just happen to be created from food that would have been wasted, and served on a pay-as-you-feel basis. This is an innovative social experiment that is already gaining a great deal of media and academic attention.

The first months of the project will involve some experimenting with opening hours, menu creation and staffing and volunteer rotas, and we are looking for an enthusiastic and committed individual who wants to get stuck in and help us develop this great project into a success in its next phase.

We are looking for someone with a real knowledge and passion for food, menus will need to change daily and the job is incredibly creative in the hands of the right person. Services running from the restaurant will range from a morning breakfast and coffee trade, lunch service, and regular evening events with more of an a la carte / experimental feel.

The project is staffed by a mix of paid staff and volunteers, so we are also looking for someone who is a great communicator and enjoys supporting and teaching others. We are investigating the potential to offer placements and training opportunities, and may look to offer more formal qualifications in the future, which would come with more support and links to education centres.

Job Purpose

To support on menu development, and support the Head Chef in managing the overall food operation.
To produce high quality dishes using only “wasted food” ingredients – more information can be provided about this on request, but the range of ingredients, spices, herbs and dry store ingredients sourced by the project is very wide.
To supervise and support volunteers through food production, with support from Head Chef and Volunteer Coordinator.
To support the Head Chef and Volunteer Coordinator in inductions, and formal and informal training and teaching of volunteers and other staff – the scope of this role can be negotiated and further defined as the project develops.
To ensure a high standard of hygiene is achieved in the kitchen at all times and instil a culture of food safety throughout the project.
To work with social media volunteers to share recipes and images that inspire people to reduce food waste.

Main duties and responsibilities
To provide quality food across the project for a variety of different services and customers.
To work creatively with “wasted food” ingredients to develop daily high quality menus that reduce food waste while offering great dishes. Menus should include consideration of vegetarian, vegan, gluten free and other dietary requirements.
To ensure food standards of preparation, presentation and service are maintained to a high level.
To ensure that hygienic working practices are carried out by all staff and volunteers, and that a culture of food safety is instilled throughout the project. This will include supporting the development, and management of cleaning rotas.
To ensure working practises adhere to Health & Safety procedures.
To work closely with volunteers, and embed informal training and “up-skilling” into working practices.
Support the Head Chef in ensuring that all administration is carried out in relation to waste food interceptions, and food safety monitoring.
To support on safe food storage, labelling, and stock rotation to further reduce food waste for the project.
To attend regular briefing meetings with the team.

Main skills and qualities we are looking for
An excellent chef with a flexible style.
Someone with a real passion for, and knowledge of food. We are looking for a creative person who will enjoy the challenge of ever changing ingredients, and developing new recipes to reduce food waste.
Strong ethics – someone who supports our mission to reduce food waste, has an interest in sustainability, and values people over profits. Someone who wants to make a real difference in this world.
A good communicator – this role involves working with an incredibly varied customer base, as well as working with a range of staff and volunteers. The project is also gaining significant media attention which we expect to increase once the restaurant opens.
Someone who enjoys teaching and empowering others: We are looking for someone with patience and good informal / on the job teaching and training skills who can bring out the best in those around them.
Team work – someone who enjoys working as part of a strong team with clear goals.

It would be useful if you could tell us in your application
•    If you have a full current UK drivers licence
•    List any qualifications you have related to food safety, health and safety, first aid, teaching or training (and obviously anything else you think is relevant)
•    Let us know any notice period you would need to honour with your current employer.

This job description covers the main areas of duties and responsibilities of a Sous Chef.  It is not exhaustive and the duties and responsibilities may change from time to time in line with the project needs. This will always be negotiated.

What can we offer you?
Real Junk Food Manchester is a small, innovative organisation with a clear mission and a good sense of ethics. We value people not profits, and are looking for the right person to get stuck in and help us build something amazing.

We are a caring organisation and will invest in the people who invest in us, whether that be training, support or equipment. Unlike a lot of positions in the food industry we are happy to be flexible with hours and holidays. The opportunity exists here to join a small team and create the job you want. Hard work will be essential, but we are an organisation that believes you should get back as much as you put in. Also, free meals for life.