Janine Van Zyl owner of Cold Gold

Janine van Zyl1. Why did you start your own business?
As a chef working 18 hours a day and 7 days a week for someone else (below the minimum wage) in 5 star establishments and not getting recognition for my food creations, I decided enough is enough, as I was losing my passion for food. I then decided when not finding any decent ice cream anywhere (I wanted to comfort myself with some ice cream after a horrible work day), that I can introduce South Africa to real artisan ice cream that is not made with strange chemical concoctions-just 100% natural, organic as far as possible, ingredients sourced from local farms & producers. The Cold Gold concept was born in November 2011.

2. What are the hours that you work?
24/7! Cold gold is my life, if you want to make a success of your business you have to become one entity and live out your business, you do not mind working all the time as you are living your dream

3. How many people work in your business?
I have two previously disadvantaged ladies – Peace and Memory – from local communities who help me at the shop, weddings and festivals.

Cold Gold ladies

4. What are the goals for your business?
At the moment Cold Gold can only be found in the Western Cape, so I would like to expand my market throughout the whole of South Africa. I would like to achieve this within the next two years.

5. How do you handle pressure?
Having your own business is constant pressure! You just have to focus, set your mind on the goal and do not panic.

6. How would a man run your business differently?
My employees and I have a very strong relationship and I believe in being a leader and not a boss, so I empower them by teaching them new skills and motivating them positively instead of micro-managing. I think this will be different when a man had to run my business.
Perfectionism also plays a big role in my business, which I think could also be non-existent. (no hard feelings men!)IMG_54088991967101


7. Would you ever go and work for a boss again?
No, I am too independent at the moment and love being my own strictest boss. I love the fact that I can empower myself, clients, suppliers and my employees.

8. Do you ever take work home with you?
My flat is my office and there is always work to do


9. What do you do to relax?
Go on a foodie adventure – this can be visiting food markets, a new restaurant, going foraging with chef friends or exploring a wine farm. We are so fortunate to stay in such a diverse country where there are constantly new ideas and concepts popping up – this keeps me refreshed.

10. What would you like to know more about to run your business better?
How I can distribute Cold Gold at an affordable cost to the rest of the country.

11. What would you do differently if you had the chance?
Nothing to be honest

12. What satisfaction do you get from running your own business?
Massive self and job satisfaction from achieving personal goals through Cold Gold by:
• Encouraging entrepreneurship & helping other businesses grow
• Empowering previously disadvantaged women from local communities and teaching them new skills
• Seeing the expression on customers’ faces after they taste Cold Gold ice cream for the first time and how happy it makes them
• Being able to make a difference in the community with green initiatives, donations and recycling


13. What makes your business successful?
Cold Gold believes that everybody should be able to have their dream dessert and eat it. Any ice cream dream can become a reality – even if you have special dietary requirements: We can use homemade nut, rice, oat, quinoa, goat, seed or practically any milk… with or without eggs… with or without sugar… Your dream in any flavour is our command. 
The Cold Gold treasure freezer is the only place to find full cream Organic Jersey milk- , fat free-, paleo/banting/high fat low carb and vegan ice creams and sorbets that taste like “the real thing” in over 800 flavours – all natural of course!

14. What form of marketing do you use?
All forms of social media and the best tool of all-Word of Mouth

 15. What is your favourite mantra?
Perfection is all the little things done well with love

Janine van Zyl, Owner & producer of Cold Gold Artisan Ice Cream and the winner of the ‘Young Entrepreneur Champion of the Year’ at the NSBC Small Business Awards.
vzjanine@hotmail.com / 074 182 5510 / http://www.coldgold.co.za