Unique people from FMG

It was in 1324 that the production of gunpowder began in Granada. It was in the same year that the first written references were made to the factory that is now known as FMG. Who do we have to thank for the fact that it has survived the most difficult times and seven centuries?

It's the people. We will never speak to those who were behind the birth of the factory. Some of them have left portraits on the walls or notes that are preserved in the museum. Hundreds of employees have dedicated a significant part of their lives to this place. They have contributed to where and who FMG is today. Several current and retired employees have shared with us what it means to them.

A life dedicated to one factory

Most employees, whether in old or modern history, joined FMG very young and stayed until retirement. They were only 15 when they first walked through the factory gates. They left when they were 65. The general manager, Antonio Caro Chena, also dedicated his life to the factory. „I started in 1984 as a trainee with the company. In January 1985, I was holding my first employment contract in my hands. That means I have been with the company for 39 years. I have worked in practically all departments and since 2007 I’ve been the general manager of the company.“

Other employees have also regaled us with similar stories and you can feel their pride as they tell their stories. They left a piece of their life and knowledge in this place. Some of their inventions are still part of FMG’s portfolio today.

The pillar of the region

The fact that the factory is a great support in the region was confirmed by the mayor of Beas de Granada, Manuel Luis Lopez Fernandez. „The truth is that FMG is a catalyst for the region. In these difficult times, with some instability in the labour market, it is good to see companies investing in local labour and promoting the development of the region.“

Former employees look back on the company with the same sense of pride. „We were a reference. In fact, in Granada, only this factory was known. When they asked you where you worked, you said in the factory. Nobody asked which factory, because it was the only factory that was there. So the region was always dependent on these facilities. The truth is that we were a family. Three generations have worked in this house. We saw a grandfather, a son and a grandson. That doesn’t exist in any other factory.“

The best craft producers from all over Spain

The best chemists, developers, mechanics, designers, carpenters, electricians and turners were taught and born on the premises of today’s FMG. This has been confirmed not only by former employees, but also by the renowned historian Francisco Gonzalez Arroyo, who has published several books about gunpowder production. „My fascination with the history of the factory goes back to my earliest childhood. The best chemists in Spain have always been trained in this factory, as well as the best mechanics, fitters, moulders, millers, carpenters, draughtsmen and countless other trades.“

The factory has seen both good and bad times over the decades and centuries. „I think we cannot look to the past, but we have to look to the future. Now the company is in a very high position. We have a very big contract, and I recommend to the workers to continue to work hard to maintain the quality of the company’s production, so that we have not 700 years, but more,“ said CEO, Antonio Caro Chena.

The future of FMG is in the hands of a new generation. They face many challenges. But they have the firm roots of previous generations and, like their parents and grandparents who can still pass on their experience, they are aware of the unique value of this factory.

Is there a factory like this anywhere else in the world?

FMG – unique in the defence industry