You might not realized that behind-the-scenes at Holland Farms Bakery & Deli, a world-famous baker is busy preparing the delicious pastries, donuts, breads and cakes for the day. But every day Ramon Zayas, production manager at Holland Farms does just that. Ramon has garnered fame for being in the Guinness Book of World Records for the world’s largest jelly donut – baked on January 21, 1993 and weighing 1.7 tons – but his top priority is serving the people of the Mohawk Valley the very best in baked goods.
Ramon, who formerly owned Donato’s Bakery in Utica, has worked at Holland Farms for the last 17 years. He has been a baker for 37 years, and lends this experience to his role at Holland Farms. “I do pretty much everything in the bakery here,” Ramon said, adding that he oversees the entire bakery, buys supplies, maintains inventory, and trains and cross-trains new employees.
Ramon is also active on a national level, serving as past president for the New York Bakers Association, as a board member for the Retail Bakers of America, and serving as current president for the New York Bakers’ Association.
But it is at Holland Farms that Ramon is most at home. “I absolutely love the people here,” Ramon said. “The staff is hard-working and conscientious, and the volume of baked goods we produce every day is phenomenal,” he said. “It’s a good feeling to be able to serve people.”
Ramon said that even after all these years; he still loves to eat sweets every day. And although he’s world-renowned for his famous jelly buns, he is especially proud of his cheesecake recipe. “It’s a real New York cheesecake. I went to Queens to learn the recipe – pure cream cheese from top to bottom. It’s delicious!”
A native of the Utica area, Ramon and his wife of 34 years have five children and five grandchildren.