ONE of Dorset’s fastest-growing firms has launched a golden ticket competition with some scrumptious opportunities on offer.

Managing director Tom Amery has kick-started a Willy Wonka-style search for new staff to join The Watercress Company.

But to be in with a chance of securing that dream job, candidates will have to secure a golden ticket to the Wondrous World of Watercress & Wasabi.

They will be given to the first 20 people to call or email the company.

The lucky 20 will then attend a tour of the factory, at Waddock Cross, near Dorchester, next Wednesday, February 26 when they could walk away with one of five key roles.

Mr Amery said: “We are used to coming up with new ideas and this has got the feel of something different, it’s almost like Charlie and the Chocolate Factory.

“This is about the future of the business and employing people from this area.

“We want to take on people who are established in Dorset and who are committed to this area.

“No-one really knows what happens in the watercress and wasabi industry and we need to entice people in.

“We’re looking to recruit people for a variety of sectors or people who are currently out of work.”

The Watercress Company, which was formed in 1994, now employs more than 300 people globally, with sites in Spain and Florida.

It has recently featured on BBC1’s Countryfile with presenter Julia Bradbury sampling its wasabi and claimed the support of French chef Raymond Blanc, who successfully bid for a record breaking wasabi grown by the company in December last year.

Mr Amery said: “I think we have underestimated the size we are.

“There was a period when we did not sell locally but we started raising our profile and supplying to local pubs and restaurants.

“We also started doing home delivery of watercress.

“The size of the business has really grown.”

Roles on offer include a distribution assistant and a transport coordinator assistant.

Anyone who thinks they’ve got what it takes should email or call 01929 463241 and ask for Lynne Ronaldson.