In Their Words : The Story of BC Packers
Women enjoying a cup of coffee in the lunchroom
Women enjoying a cup of coffee in the lunchroom while on a coffee break at Namu Cannery in 1963.
City of Richmond Archives 1985 4 282
Women enjoying a cup of coffee in the lunchroom Cannery workers buying ice cream at the company store The manager of the company store in Namu in 1963 The coffee and lunchroom at Namu Cannery

In the Lunchroom and the Company Store

With so much fast-paced work going on in such a loud environment, mealtime in the lunchroom or breaktime at the Company Store were natural places for socializing with friends and other cannery workers. Former cannery worker Elsie Jacobs recalls, "You shared a big lunchroom and everything... Then you meet up with Velma and the Native ladies and you meet up with Nancy who was East Indian and you meet... a few others and you mix. You mix good, eh... There was the language difference, and most of the Japanese just stayed to themselves."

Chinese-Canadian cannery worker Brian Jong recalls, "Dock guys, well we don't have our own lunchroom, so we don't sit together and when we had our own lunchroom, at Imperial there, it's nice when the whole crew comes in for coffee and lunch and talk, you get more camaraderie, you work together better. You don't have to say anything. When you need help your buddy, helps, you know, so a lot of unspoken actions."

clover leaf