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Compass Groupin projektipäällikkö Hanna Ruotsalainen

Compass Group’s Project Manager Hanna Ruotsalainen says that 100–200 employees eat lunch at the canteen on the Hanhikivi peninsula on a daily basis. The construction site canteen is located in the support functions area of the Hanhikivi 1 construction site. Photo by Amanda Aho

Canteen opens at the Hanhikivi 1 construction site

The Amica canteen that opened on the Hanhikivi peninsula has received a warm welcome. For Compass Group, a provider of catering services, the container canteen at the Hanhikivi 1 construction site is the largest in Finland.

Compass Group opened the canteen at the Hanhikivi 1 construction site in September. How has everything gone so far, Project Manager Hanna Ruotsalainen?

Our operations have gotten off to a great start. We can tell that the construction site employees are excited about having us here.

The daily number of employees using our services has been 100–200, including both workers and office employees. Many people have told us they were really looking forward to an on-site canteen. Feedback on the meals we serve has also been positive. Some have gone as far as to compare them to home-cooked meals.

In total, we have capacity to seat 600 people, so we are prepared for an increase in the number of personnel. Currently, there are approximately 500 people working at the construction site, but during the peak construction stage, the number will grow to up to 5,500 people. The canteen hours are from 7 a.m. to 2:30 p.m., but we have the option of switching to round-the-clock service provision.

The canteen is a “container canteen”. What does it mean?

Hanhikivi 1 project’s main contractor Titan-2 has provided a temporary container canteen, which will be disassembled once the nuclear power plant is completed. Originally, the concept was developed for Norwegian oil platforms and later fairly successfully implemented in Finland. The interior looks just like any lunch restaurant.

We have good experiences of running container canteens at Metsä Group sites in Äänekoski and Kemi in Finland. The container canteen on the Hanhikivi peninsula is our largest container canteen, measured by the number of seats.

What kind of a team runs the canteen?

Currently, we have three employees: a canteen manager, a kitchen manager and a cook, but we are hiring more people. As the operations grow, we will need cooks, dishwashers and cashiers. Once the construction site canteen is in full operation, we will employ 15–20 people.

What requirements do you have for the Hanhikivi 1 canteen employees?

They must have the right attitude so that serving customers, which can be hectic at times, is conducted smoothly regardless of the circumstances and the time of day. Language skills are important: the employees must know at least English but other languages are also useful at the international construction site.

What kind of meals do you serve?

It’s been nice to see that salads have become increasingly popular. Young men, in particular, add more and more greens on their plates. Previously, customers might have chosen something like meat pastries for lunch, but now they opt for a warm meal and a salad.