Santa not the only one with a full warehouse this holiday season

No Santa’s Warehouse: Mike Zieffle, the director of sales for Alberta at Old Dutch, walking down the aisle of chip boxes. This photo was taken in the Old Dutch warehouse located in Calgary, AB. On November 22, 2023. (Photo by {Josh Salvucci}/The Press)

When you think of busy businesses during the holiday season, the first one that comes to mind probably isn’t a chip company.

But it should be as the month of December is traditionally the busiest of the year for Old Dutch Foods. Products will fly off the shelves, which means just like at Santa’s workshop, workers will have to put in a lot of extra hours to keep them stocked.

“Typically, it is one of the seasons where everybody gathers with family and friends. It is the time when money seems to be less of an object,” said Mike Zieffle, director of sales for Alberta.

Old Dutch Foods is a Canadian chip company that will celebrate its 70th year in Canada in 2024. Being a locally grown company, they are often the first choice for Canadians when it comes to chips, and that is no different during the holiday season.

Combined with a new sponsorship with the CFL, Old Dutch is hoping this holiday season will be even more of a hit. Even though Zieffle knows how busy it will be, he wants to make sure all employees will have the chance to spend time with their loved ones.

“We prepare well in advance to make sure that everybody has time to spend with their families and friends,” Zieffle said. Just like keeping the shelves filled, there will be a lot of preparation to make sure each employee gets the proper amount of time off. 

Some of the employees include Rahul Dhakal and Abhishek Shah, who are independent distributors for Old Dutch. Both of them go to stores across Calgary and southern Alberta to make sure each store is properly stocked. They both work nonstop during the weeks leading up to Christmas but all they can do is be prepared.

It is definitely a challenging time because we have to set up all of the displays in a short amount of time,” said Shah. 

One thing that is undeniable is that it is amazing for the profits of the company, and the independent distributors. “Whatever I’m making for a week usually, it almost doubles for the two weeks around Christmas,” said Dhakal.  

Another deciding factor in sales increasing during the holiday season is that it’s a time to relax. Before and after the big feast that many people will have, it makes sense to want to enjoy the break with some snacks. 

Finding the balance is always tricky for the holiday season. Some employees will have to work weekends, long days, and occasionally on the days of certain holidays. Old Dutch will be prepared. But would you have ever expected a chip company to be one of the busiest companies during Christmas time? They may not have a warehouse the same size of Santa’s, but it will surely be just as full.  

Getting Prepared: Mike Zieffle, the director of sales for Alberta at Old Dutch, with boxes ready to be taken out for order. The photo was taken at the Old Dutch warehouse located in Calgary, AB. On November 22, 2023. (Photo by {Josh Salvucci}/The Press)
About Josh Salvucci 3 Articles
As a news reporting and communications major in the journalism program at SAIT, Josh Salvucci is working as a writer for The Press in 2024.