From May 12- May 15, 2020, kombucha brewers from all over the country came together to lobby their representatives in support of the KOMBUCHA ACT. With many states in full lock down, and Congressional staff working from home, KBI’s bi-annual hill climb looked a little bit different this year than in years passed. Normally, KBI President Hannah Crum and her team fly to Washington, alongside kombucha brewers and advocates. Hours are spent “climbing the hill”- running from building to building, meeting with Congressional Staff, and educating staff and representatives about what the heck kombucha even is.

Since the KOMBUCHA Act was introduced in 2016, KBI has attended over 180 meetings with Senate and Congressional staff, to educate lawmakers about the Kombucha industry and to drum up support for the Act. The COVID crisis threatened to cancel our critically timed May hill climb, but KBI and our brewer advocates got creative. Unable to meet with staff and representatives in person, our team set up 17 virtual meetings over video and online conferencing platforms.

Over the span of just a few days, KBI members, board members, and staff worked together to communicate the stories of how this crisis has impacted our industry and how the Act will provide stability for additional industry expansion. Away from the hustle and bustle of Capitol Hill, the meetings took on a more intimate, personal tone. Often, hill climbs are a rushed and hectic scene. Through the magic of the “work from home” hill climb, we were able to promote the KOMBUCHA Act, and the needs of our industry in general, to focused and interested staffers.

We shared some of the unique struggles our industry has faced over the last few months, like loss of product as well as CO2 shortages. The staffers and representatives were extremely kind, generous with their time, and responsive. As a direct result of our meetings, the KOMBUCHA Act picked up four additional co-sponsors.

We all know that kombucha brewers are a passionate, creative, and hardworking group. This May’s virtual hill climb is further proof of that, and showed that when we get creative and put in the work, big things can happen to benefit our industry!

JOIN US FOR UPCOMING VIRTUAL HILL CLIMB EVENTS AND HAVE YOUR VOICE HEARD!

CALIFORNIA KOMBUCHA BREWERS – June 23-25th

Meetings already set up with:

  • Senator Kamala Harris
  • Speaker Nancy Pelosi
  • Plus YOUR LOCAL REPRESENTATIVE

FLORIDA & NEW YORK KOMBUCHA BREWERS – July 21-23rd

If you’d like to join the meetings, or schedule a meeting with your local congressman, please email lgo@kombuchabrewers.org.

In response to COVID-19 pandemic the kombucha industry banded together to bring our personal brand of worldwide healing to those threatened physically, emotionally and economically.

Kombucha Heal-In Results

  • With the help of sponsors, social media partners, and participating brewers, we exceeded our goal of 100,000 bottles of kombucha donated to hospitals and food banks around the world.
  • We also provided financial support to struggling small business brewers through a week-long program matching gift card sales, and…

  • Our “Embody Health” social media campaign and press around our Heal-In initiative helped to raise the profile of the kombucha industry and participating brands and sponsors.

THANK YOU
to the sponsors of our gift card matching initiative:

Tier 1:

Gamer Packaging
Gamer Packaging
Rocky Mountain Cultures
Rocky Mountain Cultures
Teatulia Organic Teas
Teatulia Organic Teas

Tier 2:

Stephen Crandall
Deerland Enzymes
Deerland Enzymes
Kombucha Kamp
Kombucha Kamp

Tier 3:

Labeltronix
Labeltronix
Mannanova Solutions
Mannanova Solutions
rBiopharm
rBiopharm

Gift Card Matching and Donations

Twenty small business brewers participated in our Gift Card matching program, May 5-11. For each dollar in gift cards they sold that week, a matching dollar from our sponsor pool purchased their kombucha for local donation.

These brewers and MANY others, large and small, far and wide, also reported donations they self-funded and donation initiatives they organized to get free kombucha into the hands of those who needed it.

Check out highlights from brewers’ donations here: 
(Hover over the slider to stay on a slide, or use the L & R arrows to move forward or back)

Brewers participating in the gift card matching program:

Better Kombucha
Coastal Craft Kombucha
Collingwood Kombucha Company
Cross Culture Kombucha
ELIXIR Kombucha
Ensign Beverage
Fed Brew
Idaho Kombucha Co.
Katalyst Kombucha
KTea Kombucha
Mombucha
Ninja Kombucha
Oregonic Tonic Kombucha
Panacea Brewing Company
Pilot Kombucha
Reputation Beverage Co
Revel Kombucha Bar
Rich Elixirs
True Büch Kombucha
Social media & kombucha-donating brewer participants:

Brew Dr.
Buchi
Cathy’s Kombucha
Diosa Organics
East Coast Kombucha
GT’s
Health-Ade Kombucha
Nesalla
Revive Kombucha
Rocky Mountain Cultures
Yugen Kombucha

Press Highlights









A number of brewers received local news media and print media coverage for their donation deliveries to hospitals and food banks, including Collingwood Kombucha, ELIXIR Kombucha, KTea, True Büch Kombucha and Yugen Kombucha.

Thank you!

We are truly amazed at the level or response from our brewers, suppliers, and kombucha consumers. It illustrates that love and compassion can be the foundation to embodying our health.

Thank you to all who participated in, and supported, our Kombucha Heal-In initiative.

Questions? Contact Us!

Hannah Crum – president@kombuchabrewers.org

Kim Noble – director@kombuchabrewers.org

image of the capitol bldg in washington dc

Our next Capitol Hill Climb to support the KOMBUCHA Act was originally scheduled for May 13th, 2020. However, due to the current limitations of COVID-19 related travel restrictions and physical distancing requirements, we are taking our efforts online! What does this mean for kombucha brewers across the United States? It’s now easier than ever to attend a lobbying event and exercise your fundamental rights! So fire up your computers, turn on that webcam, and let’s bring our voices (and faces) to Washington!

  • Learn the ropes of lobbying with experienced brewers
  • Have a platform to share how the current economic crisis has impacted your business
  • Advocate for your industry and business
  • Create valuable relationships with lawmakers
  • Receive hands on training from our experienced lobbying team via a one time Zoom meeting- Friday, May 8th 11am PST
  • Network with fellow brewers and activists during our virtual lobbying happy hour on Friday May 15th at 1pm PST, led by KBI president Hannah Crum
  • ** NON KBI MEMBERS also welcome to join us – We fight for your rights too!

More information about the KOMBUCHA Act and our lobbying efforts can be found on our website.  

 If you are available to join us, please contact KBI at lgo@kombuchabrewers.org to receive updated information as it becomes available. 

The registration form to participate can be found here.

BrewLogix Data-Driven Growth & Opportunity Webinar

Presented by:


Lori Bolin

BIO

Lori Bolin is the Chief Strategy Officer for BrewLogix, an exciting “Internet of Things” company leveraging technology and analytics to drive growth for those who brew, self-distribute, or serve kegged beverages. Lori is also currently overseeing the “next gen” development of BreweryDB, the largest and most complete curated database of breweries in the world. In addition to her passionate work in the brewing industry, Ms. Bolin is the owner of a private consulting firm that focuses on creating competitive advantage for small-to-mid-market businesses through strategic innovation. Lori began her educational pursuit earning a four-year scholarship as a piano performance major before graduating Indiana University with a degree in business and telecommunications. She is a Certified Beer Server in the Cicerone® Program and her favorite Kombucha flavor (right now) is Guava!

WEBINAR DESCRIPTION

We know your taprooms are currently shut down but that makes this the perfect time to learn how you can upgrade your operation, whether you brew, self-distribute, or serve kegged kombucha, you could gain a business advantage by seeing inside your kegs…and learning from “the data within”. During this uplifting webinar, learn how kegged beverage environments are expanding and how you can use the analytics within your kegs to grow your top and bottom lines while improving your customer experience!

Learn how a cold draft coffee brewer and self-distributor more than doubled his business in one year using an “Internet of Things” (IoT) solution and consider applying the same concepts to your organization! See how the owner of an on-premise retail environment can view his keg levels from anywhere and quickly analyze his draft performance. It will spark ideas for your tap room! You’ll also have an opportunity to speak into the next generation of BreweryDB to better serve the Kombucha community and capture the data most important to you!

See you there!

We invite you to listen in and ask questions. FREE for KBI Members & Non-Members

SIGN UP TODAY TO ATTEND THE WEBINAR

April 29th 1:00pm PST

Details

DATE: April 29th, 2020
TIME: 1-3pm PST; 90 min presentation & 30 min Q&A
COST: Free for KBI members & Non-Members
REGISTRATION LINK
Have questions? Please send in advance to admin@kombuchabrewers.org

Want to see other KBI webinars? Find them here.

Not a KBI Member, JOIN TODAY

 

 

How to Set up an E-Commerce Site Webinar

Presented by:


Orleatha Smith

Bio

Orleatha is a serial entrepreneur with experience in a wide variety of fields with the most recent decade spent in eCommerce creating and growing Better Meal Plans, a digital meal planner and app. Her most recent endeavor is InclusivePay – a financial and merchant services broker that specializes in serving cannabis and other high-risk businesses. She holds an advanced degree in education, a biology teaching credential, and is a certified holistic lifestyle coach. She has also been featured in popular publications such as First For Women Magazine, The Los Angeles Times, and has had appearances on various podcasts and television shows.

WEBINAR DESCRIPTION

In these challenging circumstances, kombucha brewers are needing to adapt quickly. Our communities need kombucha now more than ever to build resistance and maintain resilience. KBI is here to support our entire industry as we pivot to technology for novel solutions.

This webinar is designed to help you navigate the many options available for creating an e-commerce platform for pick up, delivery and other distribution options. Join us and our guest Orleatha as we discuss payment processing, pick up options, and give you concrete ways to level up your business during this time.

We grow together!

We invite you to listen in and ask questions. FREE for KBI Members & Non-Members

SIGN UP TODAY TO ATTEND THE WEBINAR

April 15th 1:00pm PST

Details

DATE: April 15th, 2020
TIME: 1-3pm PST; 90 min presentation & 30 min Q&A
COST: Free for KBI members & Non-Members
REGISTRATION LINK
Have questions? Please send in advance to admin@kombuchabrewers.org

Want to see other KBI webinars? Find them here.

Not a KBI Member, JOIN TODAY

Kombucha Brewer Resources & Strategies in the Time OF COVID-19 Webinar

Presented By:


Katherine Florman
Director of Human Resources for MAG Group


Dave Ransom
Attorney and lobbyist for the kombucha brewers industry, McDermott Will & Emery LLP


Erica Stocker
Public Policy Advisor, McDermott Will & Emery LLP

WEBINAR DESCRIPTION

Join us for a webinar led by HR professional, Katherine Florman, lobbyist, Dave Ransom, and Public Policy Advisor, Erica Stocker to discuss the HR and legal ramifications of the COVID-19 pandemic.  This webinar will compare stats and trends across regions, address kombucha’s status as an essential business, identify HR priorities for appropriately addressing our employees and customers, and look at how current and upcoming policy decisions may affect our brewers.  We’ll also check-in with our brewers to see how we are weathering the storm and exchange stories and ideas for remaining productive.

WEBINAR TAKEAWAYS

  • Ways to take care of yourself and your employees.
  • A list of employment policies and procedures to create or review
  • How employees and small businesses can access available aid and stimulus resources
  • How does kombucha qualify as an “essential business?”
  • What policies have been enacted (or are being considered) that may help kombucha businesses?
  • Ideas for pivoting your business model to retain/maximize sales 
  • Links to informational and template resources
  • And much more!

We invite you to listen in and ask questions. FREE for KBI Members & Non-Members

BONUS – Post webinar discussion on how different brands are pivoting or collaborating to ensure customers have access to the foods they need. Skip to the end for the conversation.

WATCH THE REPLAY

April 1st 1:00pm PST

Details

DATE: April 1st, 2020
TIME: 1-3pm PST; 90 min presentation & 30 min Q&A
COST: Free for KBI members & Non-Members
REGISTRATION LINK
Have questions? Please send in advance to admin@kombuchabrewers.org

Want to see other KBI webinars? Find them here.

Not a KBI Member, JOIN TODAY

Legend of Kombucha & Origin of World Kombucha Day
221 BC

“The most famous legend of Kombucha’s origin dates it to the Qin dynasty (221-206 BCE) during which time … it was referred to as the “Tea of Immortality.” The emperor Qin Shi Huang (秦始皇) is said to have sought to lengthen his life by any means available and this Tea of Immortality was delivered by alchemists at his request.” The Big Book of Kombucha

While we many never know where exactly Kombucha originated, this legend hints at the reverence that Kombucha brewers have had for this beautiful culture. Watch the video below to learn more about its historic origins. To honor the year of 221 BC, Kombucha Brewers International has designated February 21st (aka 2.21) as WORLD KOMBUCHA DAY!

 

 

Kombucha Culture

The ethos behind World Kombucha Day is not only to celebrate our favorite ferment, it is also to raise awareness around symbiosis and interconnectedness; diversity and inclusion; our bonds as humans and stewards of the planet. To that end, collaborate and reach out to as many local brands as possible. This is an opportunity to celebrate the CULTURE of Kombucha as much as the drink.

Kombucha Culture Ethics

  • Healthy Boundaries lead to Healthy Culture
  • Strength in Diversity
  • Symbiosis provides win-win-win opportunities for people, planet & prosperity

Kombucha Brewing Industry Values

  • Symbiosis & Collaboration
  • Sustainability & Stewardship
  • Radical Transparency
  • Triple Bottom Line – People, Planet & Prosperity
  • Diversity is our Nature!

How to Celebrate World Kombucha Day

Kombucha Brands

  • Offer free Kombucha to everyone
    • BOGO – buy one get one free
    • Free to first XX customers
  • Hold a tasting event at your taproom, favorite retailer or farmers market
    • Special Kombucha Kocktails/Mocktails
    • Several brands collab together at favorite retailer or farmers market
    • Potential to raise money for earth focused causes
      • Donate a portion of proceeds to KBI
      • 1% for the Planet
      • Local cause
  • Suggested Ways to Celebrate the Culture of Kombucha
    • SCOBY/Culture Petting Zoo (originated by Kombucha Kamp)
      • Pull out your mothers and invite consumers to touch them
      • Dispose of handled cultures for safety
    • Kombucha Brewing Demo
      • Offer a free workshop to walk people through the steps of brewing Kombucha
      • Sell your own homebrew Kombucha kit or refer them to KombuchaKamp.com 
    • Giant Human SCOBY (originated by Kombucha Kamp)
      • Start the Giant Human SCOBY with the rules of engagement
        • “With safe touch & healthy boundaries, like the bacteria we love and as bacteriosapiens, we throw out our nanofibers of connection (aka your hands) to create a GIANT, HUMAN, SCOBY” 
      • Request that everyone’s hands touch in order to “Close the loop”
        • Pause for a moment to breathe – it is not always easy to get large groups to connect so enjoy the vibrations of shared experience
      • Offer your heartfelt thoughts of love, humanity & the planet or any aspect of “Kombucha Culture”
      • Thank everyone for showing up and coming together, “united we stand” & “diversity is our nature”
      • Take photos or a video to share on social media
    • Other ways to entertain the crowd
      • Live Music
      • Face Painters
      • Other Kombucha based or fermented food vendors

 

Kombucha Consumers

  • Attend a WKD event and bring your friends
  • Share our “What is Kombucha” YouTube video on social media
  • Post photos of you with your favorite Kombucha brand/homebrew & use the social media tags
  • Host a Kombucha tasting with friends
    • Can also be Hard Kombucha!
  • Wear your favorite Kombucha swag – post photos on social media
  • Share your story of how Kombucha has impacted your life on social media & tag us

Social Media Tags

Use these tags to celebrate the day!

#worldkombuchaday

#kombuchaday

#kombuchabrewers @kombuchabrewers

#ilovekombucha

#kombuchalover

#221worldkombuchaday

#kombuchachangedmylife

#wegrowtogether

#diversityisournature

We are always searching for ways to create additional value for all of our members. To that end, we are spearheading a new opportunity for providing education and hands-on training at KombuchaKon ’20.  Our theme this year is “Leveling Up” and one of the areas our members have mentioned as a knowledge gap is in hands on experience working with lab and testing equipment to ensure the quality control aspects of brewing commercial Kombucha.

We are excited the following speakers and companies will be partnering with us to bring you this exciting opportunity.

The Core 4 – pH, Brix, TA & ABV with Evan Beyers & Kelley Freeman (BABS)

  • Educate attendees about basic lab practices (safety, pipetting, mixing, and note-taking)
  • Teach attendees the theory behind pH and how to optimally take pH samples. Have them perform their own pH measurements with demo equipment
  • Show attendees how to properly clean and maintain pH probe to get the maximum life out of probe
  • Educate attendees about the theory and background of a titration
  • Introduce attendees to the sour/sweet ratio (TA/Sugar).
  • Have them perform demo titrations using RedCheck
  • Explain to attendees how to use collect sugar and TA data to build sour/sweet ratio

RIDA®CUBE for In-House Enzyme Testing – Sugars, Acids, Ethanol and more (R-Biopharm)

  • Learn how to run enzymatic test kits on the RIDA®CUBE system including ethanol, organic acids, and sugars.
  • Learn how to use pipettors & discuss common pipetting errors (and how to avoid them!)
  • Discuss potential sampling issues.

Ethanol & Glucose Testing (OptiEnz Sensors)

What’s in your kombucha? It’s a critical question – one requiring fast and accurate measurements for the effective monitoring of ethanol and glucose concentrations in commercial kombucha processes. Proper monitoring results in higher product quality, product consistency, process improvement and efficiency, and verification that the alcoholic content doesn’t exceed the 0.5% ABV threshold for non-alcoholic beverages. OptiEnz has developed a fast, accurate, and low-cost analyzer for measuring ethanol and glucose in kombucha. The analyzer is based on optical enzymatic biosensing technology, meaning that enzymes and light are used together to accurately measure the alcohol and sugar in the beverage. In this workshop, attendees will learn about optical enzymatic biosensing principals as well as how to calibrate the instrument, make measurements in kombucha, and interpret the data produced.

  • Learn about optical enzymatic biosensor principals and applications
  • Hands-on instruction for making measurements with an OptiEnz analyzer.
  • Discussion about interpreting data.

From Distillation to Alcolyzer (Anton Paar)

  • Learn about tools and techniques to monitor and control your fermentation process

FUN-damentals of Kombucha Microscopy with Keisha Rose Harrison (OSU)

  • How to prepare a sample for plating
  • How to select media
  • How to perform a dilution series for plating
  • How to streak or spread plate to decide which technique works best
  • How to colony pick
  • DNA extraction from an isolated colony
  • How to prepare a wet mount for microscopic view
  • How to use a microscope
  • How to distinguish between yeast & bacteria under the microscope
  • How to characterize morphology of yeast & bacteria under the microscope
  • How to distinguish between AAB & LAB under the microscope

Attend just 1 session for $49 or attend all 5 for $199!

 

At Kombucha Summit 2019, Hannah Crum, President & Chairman of the Board Kombucha Brewers International (KBI), talks about the journey of how KBI came into being, its achievements in just 5 short years and what the future holds for the Kombucha industry.

Don’t miss the Kombucha Summitt interview with Hannah, where she discusses her journey into the world of Kombucha and her thoughts on the growth of the Kombucha industry in Europe.

11 dedicated KBI member brands and new affiliate member, Cetotec, gathered at the headquarters of KBI member Fairment in Berlin, Germany. We were treated to a wide variety of delicious ferments including Fairment’s line of fermented veggies, Kombucha and milk kefir. There was plenty of time to network and reconnect with old friends while meeting new ones.

Attendee NameCompanyCountry  
Paul SeelhorstFairmentGermany
Katherine AttiehKTeaGuernsey
Christopher HumberKTeaGuernsey
Naya BravoMeraki FermentsSpain
Patrick DeSpainMeraki FermentsSpain
Patrick SwitzerNycha KombuchaSwitzerland
Renato BrazOh K! KombuchaPortugal
Joana Silva BrazOh K! KombuchaPortugal
Kendra SepulvedaProbio DrinksSpain
Jesus ZamoranoSoul KSpain
Krister HällThe Good GuysFinland
Hanna KatajamäkiThe Good GuysFinland
Yannick ClaermanYugen KombuchaBelgium
Chris De BackerYugen KombuchaBelgium
Sylvia LieseCETOTEC Germany
Hannah CrumKBIUSA
Justine MuddeEuromonitorUK

The program was well received and sparked great conversations. Justine Mudde of Euromonitor provided a comprehensive overview of the EU Kombucha market including where Kombucha falls in the portfolio of beverages as well as where expected growth trends for Kombucha and similar beverages are anticipated. While the EU market is a few years behind the US, there are loads of new brewers who are entering the space. With the trend toward less alcohol consumption and a preference for healthy drinks, there is a great opportunity for Kombucha. The trick is managing price expectations from a market that is used to cheap sodas and energy drinks.

KBI Members Login Here to Access the Presentation.

Photos credits Jan Vu Kombucha Summitt

KBI President, Hannah Crum, provided an overview of the new Standard of Identity that is currently being worked on by the Board. Several technical specifications are being considered and the group provided feedback on what elements they felt were important to include. It’s apparent that more testing and thoughtful consideration is required before finalizing a standard. Many voiced a desire to protect traditional brewing methods.

Fairment cooked up a delicious lunch of tempeh and the booch and conversation flowed easily.

The final presentation was a discussion about Techniques to Control Ethanol in Kombucha. The topic opened the floor to questions about production methods, best practices and how to manage scaling up and distribution. More experienced members offered their feedback and the exchange of information was free-flowing. By the end of the meeting, a new KBI EU Committee Head emerged and we are delighted to announce that Krister Häll of The Good Guys is our new Head.

We then ventured into the city to meet up with other Kombucha brewers at a local brewhouse for beer (it is Oktober Fest after all!) and dinner. Then off to BRLO for a craft beer tour. The following day was the commencement of the Kombucha Summit. The 2-day event generated 250 participants from nearly every country in the EU.

Photos credit Jan Vu from Kombucha Summitt

The event was put on as a collaboration of KBI Affiliate member, Denis Kelleher of Good Culture and Roy Kombucha (Berlin). The speaker roster included several current & former KBI members including Krister Häll of The Good Guys (Finland), Paul Seelhorst of Fairment (Germany), Adam Vanni of Jarr Kombucha (UK), Seb Bureau from Mannanova (Canada) and KBI President, Hannah Crum, who led the room in forming a “giant human SCOBY” enlivening the crowd.

KBI Affiliate member, Petainer, was also providing workshops and demonstrations on using one-way PET kegs.