Thousands celebrate Krispy Kreme opening in Delaware

Doughnut lovers flocked a Krispy Kreme in New Castle on Tuesday in celebration of the store’s grand opening.

The newly-constructed store in front of the New Castle Farmer’s Market features more than 15 varieties of Krispy Kreme doughnuts, as well as bagels and coffee. The drive-thru is open 24-hours.

Brian Zaslow, co-owner of the store, said they served thousands of customers on their first day of business. The Delaware location is the fifth store that Zaslow and business partner Keith Morgan have opened since 2010. They also run locations in greater Philadelphia and New Jersey.

“Busy is an understatement,” Zaslow said. “We had a non-stop line from 6 a.m. until our store closed at 11 p.m. Our drive-thru was packed until two in the morning.”

Krispy Kreme shops were once located on Route 202 in Wilmington and on Route 40 in Bear, but both were shut down a few years ago.

Fans and detractors alike

On Tuesday, doughnut fans began lining up days before the grand opening for a chance to win some of the store’s big prizes.

The first customer in line, who arrived around noon on Sunday, won a dozen glazed doughnuts every week for a year while the following 99 customers in line won one glazed doughnut every month for a year.

“It was awesome,” Zaslow said. “We were totally blown away by the support and the passion of everyone who came to visit our store.”

He said he expects the momentum to continue through the holiday weekend.

“We’re on Route 13, and people take that way to go down to the beaches, so we hope they’ll stop to grab their doughnuts,” he said..

While the grand opening was mostly enthusiastic, a few protesters gathered near the property to shame the doughnut franchise for using a product that comes from rain forests.

According to the Forest Hero’s Campaign, Krispy Kreme doughnuts are fried in palm oil, which comes from suppliers who are accused of cutting down rain forests for their plantations.

According to Krispy Kreme’s website, the company has stepped up its efforts to use sustainable palm oil.

“Our efforts to do so began in January 2014 with a commitment to only source products for our US locations from suppliers who are certified members of the Roundtable of Sustainable Palm Oil (RSPO), and those who can guarantee compliance with all sustainable palm oil production methods as defined in the RSPO guidelines,” the website stated. 

Want a digest of WHYY’s programs, events & stories? Sign up for our weekly newsletter.

It will take 126,000 members this year for great news and programs to thrive. Help us get to 100% of the goal.