Record-breaking ice cream
Yellowknife business orders lots of ice cream supplies

by Jennifer Pritchett
Northern News Services

NNSL (Apr 02/97) - Just call him the ice-cream man. As the biggest seller of soft-serve ice cream in the Northwest Territories and Alberta, Loc Nguyen is king of the cones.

Nguyen figures he sells more than 16,000 ice-cream cones during the peak season from April to September, all from his Reddi Mart store on 50th Street.

"I am selling twice the amount as Dairy Queens down south," he says.

Nguyen is back in Yellowknife after a trip to Edmonton to be recognized for beating out Alberta as the top single vendor of soft-serve.

"I am very, very surprised because it's so cold here in Yellowknife," he says. "Even in the summer, it's not hot here like it is down south. And I'm not doing anything any different than anybody else."

The owner of Reddi Mart for six years, Nguyen bought the soft-serve machine for about $18,000 in December of 1990. "In about four months, I paid off the machine," he says.

His record-setting day for selling the most ice cream for his store came on Canada Day in 1991, the first summer after he bought the machine.

"Everyone was lined up to get ice cream," recalls Nguyen. "All kinds of people bought the ice cream -- everyone from the young to the very old."

While Nguyen won't comment on the deal he got from the soft-serve supplier for selling so much product, he will say: "It's very good for us."

"They (the supplier) never used to believe me when I would call to order more mix," he says.

He thanks the people who continually buy his ice cream. They're his bread and butter ... or rather his ice cream and cone.