Watch for No. 57.
Miss Rangi Lewis of Godfrey Phillips, Feilding, is regarded by experts as the fastest tobacco packer in any part of the world. The management and the fourteen Maori girls of the factory together prepared a story for us about Miss Lewis and her achievement.
The Feilding factory was opened six years ago and many of the original Maori staff are still there. One of them is Mrs J. Cowan, the secretary of the Raukawa district council of the MWWL; the youngest, Miss Ruth Hetaraka, has already been at the factory for two and a half years. This is an example of a country industry which not only brings prosperity to the manufacturer, but also helps the Maori people by providing work near their ancestral homes.
Packing tobacco is a job that requires quick and accurate finger work. Each packet of Greys or Black and White has to be carefully lined; two ounces of tobacco have to be weighed out with a balance and then neatly placed in the packet.
Miss Rangi Lewis has on occasions managed to pack over 300 pounds of tobacco in an eight hour day by this method. To do this, she had to make at least 28,000 to 30,000 movements each day.
Many people must at one time or another have seen her handiwork. Her packets have the number 57 on the flap.
Miss Lewis works in a rhythmic and co-ordinated manner reducing unnecessary movements to a minimum. Each day she sets herself a target quantity and she always exceeds her target. She conditions her mind so that her only interest is in accomplishing her task. She never allows herself to be distracted in any way.
More than two thousand were at the annual gathering of the Ratana Church at Ratana Pa last January. During the great service in the temple, hundreds had to stand outside as the temple could not contain them. Competitions were held in action song, band music and sports and the marae committee did a splendid job in organizing and controlling the large gathering and feeding the visitors. Our photographs show the procession held after the church service.