Summer Job: Chef Michael Van de Elzen

What was your summer job when you were at school/uni, and what did it entail

I was brought up on a poultry farm in West Auckland, so between the age of 11-14 while my friends went out and played I shovelled chicken poop and bagged it into $1.75 10kg bags, collected eggs, swept kilometres of concrete floors and painted endless rows of steel cages.

How/why did you end up working there?

Even though I was working at home ... on a chicken farm ... for my parents ... while my friends played ... I was being paid!


What did you like/not like about it?

Even at a young age, I realised that if I wanted that awesome motocross bike in the magazines I had to work for it. At the age of 14, I bought a brand new Kawasaki KDX 200. Getting it home was a moment in my life I will never forget! All that hard work was forgotten!

Did you have any embarrassing moments working there, and if so what happened?

Once a shed of 5000 chickens got the runs. It was more of a, "how do I clean this up?!" moment.

What was your dream job at that age?

I either wanted to become an accountant, builder or a chef!
I'm glad I became the latter.