The Wellbread Bakery (a fictitious name) is a medium-sized factoryproduction bakery in the south-east of England. It is the major bakery of a small chain which includes two other production bakeries, and several smaller distribution depots. At Wellbread’s, production staff make a variety of bread, rolls, cakes and confectionery. Despatch staff break ‘runs’ of production down into the individual orders submitted by the salesmen, and prepare for each salesman a bread rack with his completed order ready for him to load onto his van. Each morning, from 2 a.m. onwards, salesmen begin to drift into work, load their vans, and get out to their customers. The sales department at Wellbread’s employs seventeen wholesale salesmen driving small lorries, who deliver bread, as middle-men, to shops for resale, and twenty-seven retail men, who are ‘on the basket’. Retail men drive small vans, and they tour a ‘round’ of domestic customers either on suburban housing estates or in the surrounding villages.
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