Santa has his elves and the Easter Bunny has its chief Easter officers.
In my role I work with Mars Wrigley Confectionery to ensure more than 24million Easter eggs get to the shops in time for Easter each year.
It’s a very egg-citing job.
A huge part of my role is co-ordinating new product launches and campaigns. Every year we bring out new Easter eggs, as well as bringing back your favourites, so we start planning new products at least two years in advance. This year’s M&M’s Eggs have been years in the making.
Work has kicked off for 2021 already and we’ve not even celebrated Easter 2019 yet.
In fact, I usually start meetings with, ‘which year are we talking about?’ and celebrating new year always feels weird as it’s like I’ve already lived it, being two years ahead.
I didn’t always want to get into chocolate, in fact I grew up in Kenya, where chocolate isn’t eaten much, and I’m of Indian origin so didn’t celebrate Easter.
I think this unlikely upbringing for someone who now works on Easter all year round means I bring a fresh perspective to the season and a curiosity that every chief Easter officer needs.
It was my love of Charlie and the Chocolate Factory and the food itself that drove me to Mars’ biscuit department, where I began, three years ago and my nephew likes to call me Easter Willy Wonka.
To be honest, it’s the only way my friends and family can wrap their heads around what my job actually is.
And just like Mr Wonka, I am very protective over our recipes and the goings on inside the factory.
I can’t tell you how much chocolate I eat every day, but let’s say, if the Easter Bunny drops by with a sample, I will be first in line to test it out.
Especially if it’s a Bounty – it’s my favourite of all the eggs we make. While they cause debate every year for being included in the Celebrations box, they fly off the shelves at Easter.
And not just during the bank holiday! Every year there will be some people who are surprised that Easter eggs appear in shops so soon after Christmas, but that’s because it’s when people start to want to buy them.
It’s great to know that I’m not the only one that celebrates Easter all year round!
It’s such a special season for so many people and I’m honoured that it’s up to me to make sure Easter remains fun, inclusive and delicious.
Every year we produce millions of eggs, and this year we will be making 24.5million – that’s an egg and a bit for every third person in the UK.
With this scale comes responsibility but it motivates me to know my work spreads so much excitement over the season.
Making sure Easter goes off without a hitch is a big job and I balance the hard work by spending my out-of-work time pursuing my hobbies (other than chocolate and Easter) like squash.
I play squash semi-competitively, and still represent the Kenya national team, so I need to keep fit.
It’s a good way to burn off all the Malteasers Bunnies I’ve been eating since they came out at the start of this year.
No day is the same as chief Easter officer. I am constantly juggling the different components, from sales wanting more products faster, to working with supply to make it happen, all the way to creating fun marketing campaigns.
I love the nostalgia that comes with Easter and something I learnt when I moved to the UK for university was the importance of the season in bringing families together.
I love how everyone has a favourite chocolate and how when people find out what I do everyone has an opinion they want to share or an idea for a new chocolate that they want me to make happen!
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