Veteran tomato tin denter retires


A tomato canning factory in Modena, Italy, today bade farewell to one of its longest-serving employees. Giuseppe Perona has been denting tins at the factory for 37 years and stifled a tear as he said, ‘it has been my life.’

Tomatoes from all over Italy are processed at the plant; peeled, chopped and sometimes even have herbs added before being sealed into cans on the production lines. Giuseppe has diligently been sitting at the end of the line throughout his career to give each of the tins a trademark dent with his little hammer. He said, ‘I love my job and have never missed a day – always I wake up with the feeling that I can’t wait to get to work. Over the years I have developed many new techniques, and for me, putting dents in tomato tins has become, how you say, an art form.’

But now Giuseppe admits he is slowing down a bit and only has time to put his stamp on maybe one in three of the tins. ‘I have become too much of a perfectionist,’ he admitted, ‘and sometimes if a dent is not quite right I can spend far too long on it, but really my best work is behind me and now it is time for my son Guillermo to take on the role. I ‘ave taught ‘im everything I know.’

The factory ground to a halt as all the staff gathered round to see Giuseppe presented with his leaving present – a gold plated tin, empty, to ‘signify loss’, with a dent lovingly put in it by Guillermo. Mr Perona thanked everyone and beamed with pride at his son, although he did say that ‘the dent could have been a little higher up, and perhaps a little deeper, and…’

‘Younger, quicker Guillermo will now take over the role.’

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Posted: Sep 22nd, 2007 by

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