Wednesday, August 4, 2010

Happy BC (Broken Cooler) Weekend

The tip of the milk iceberg
OK... glass half full… glass half full… happy thoughts…

With every bad news comes a silver lining, and I'm going to take some bad news here and focus on the silver.

Over the BC Day long weekend, our power blew and our giant walk-in coolers and freezers shut down. Inside we keep $5-10,000 worth of milk, creamer, cheeses, bagels, breads, muffins, croissants, cookies and all sorts of fresh fruits like apples, oranges, pears and the list goes on.

Well, Sandy and I just stopped in the office Monday to install a Wii game console in the boardroom as a surprise to the staff for hitting a record breaking sales year. While walking in the warehouse as we came in, we noticed the coolers fans were not on (usually they are quite loud.) So we opened the cooler door and… $%#& #$@# (golly darn)… pardon my French… the power breaker had blown, and the inside of the cooler was as warm as the warehouse.

Food Bank donation - 400 dozen bagels!
OK… happy thoughts… all the perishable product was ruined, but the bakery product would still be OK since it was flash frozen from the factory. (Once thawed, it has 7 - 10 days of shelf life.)

So we pulled out all the bakery product and put it on carts to send to the Food Bank. They were so overwhelmed with product, they said they were going to divide up the donation and share it with 3-4 other agencies. So on that glass half full side, it was great to see the product go to good use. We wrote off about $6,000 of product, and we are now installing a thermostat monitored by our alarm so this doesn't happen again.

I wanted to give a shout out of appreciation to our staff who really pulled it together Tuesday morning to recover and restock (thanks Accounting, Sales, Todd, Kirsti, Joy, Kathie, Gord and all the Warehouse) so we could be back up right away.

My only concern was that we disappointed our customers who counted on us for these products after a long weekend. We called every customer and they all were OK waiting a day, but still - our brand promise is perfect every time - on time.
I do apologize personally to our customers for any disruption to your busy days.