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Jan 16, 2018

Sean Lovett had a serious Coke habit -- until he found kombucha. That change had been long in the making. Like many other consumers, Lovett remained a loyal Coke drinker for years, despite creeping concerns about its high sugar and calorie count. Seeking a soda alternative with a healthy halo, he took his first sip of kombucha nearly a decade ago and has never looked back. It was an experience that launched a mission: create a brand that could serve as “the Coke of the kombucha world.” In 2010 Lovett founded Revive Kombucha, a Sonoma-based company whose focus is to “sustainably produce the best tasting kombucha you’ve ever had.” Leading with approachable flavors aimed at mainstream consumers, Revive is primarily sold along the West Coast and is also distributed in metro New York; the brand is sold nationally at Trader Joe’s. It might not yet be Coke, but Lovett believes he’s getting closer to his vision. In a wide-ranging interview included in this episode of Taste Radio, he explained Revive’s value as a “kombucha that can get consumers off of soda,” and why collaborating with competitors is critical to the category’s success. Also included in this episode: a conversation with longtime CPG executive Doug Radi. The current CEO of dairy-alternative brand Good Karma Foods, Radi discussed the evolution of packaged food and beverage over his nearly two decades in the space and how Good Karma is innovating for the future. And in the latest edition of Elevator Talk, we met with Brittany Fuisz is the founder of Malibu Meals, a innovative food brand that markets organic, gluten and dairy-free food blends that are packaged in convenient, shelf-stable pouches. This episode is presented by OWYN. Show notes: 1:13: Sponsors, Here’s A Great Way to Rep Your Company -- A quick chat about Repsly’s excellent video interview series from BevNET Live Winter 2017. 2:26: “Visiting Hours” -- It’s a new year, and with it comes new opportunities -- like making your way to the Northeast for the usual fun, sun and plethora of business opportunities that the region offers. Whether you’re planning a trip to the Boston area or if your helicopter simply needs to make an emergency landing, please make us a part of your visit (or near-death experience). Meet with the editorial team; get feedback on your brands and products; talk to us about building awareness and educating consumers about your brand; investors, distributors, retailers -- we want to see you folks, too; check out our wicked cool bah. Also, we'll be in San Francisco this weekend and part of next week for the annual Winter Fancy Food show. Attending the event? Drop us a line. 6:25: Interview: Sean Lovett, Founder/CEO, Revive Kombucha -- Sean Lovett is the founder and CEO of Revive Kombucha, a maker of organic kombucha based in Sonoma County. Recorded at BevNET Live Winter 2017, Sean joined John Craven and Mike Schneider for a deep dive into Revive, including the key decision points behind its creation and efforts build an enduring brand. 28:57: Interview: Doug Radi, CEO, Good Karma Foods -- Doug Radi is the CEO of Good Karma Foods, a maker of plant-based milks and yogurts. Doug is a longtime food and beverage executive and veteran of legacy and upstart companies alike, with experience at Horizon Organic, Rudi's Gluten Free Breads, Silk and Frito-Lay. At NOSH Live Winter 2017, Doug sat down with Project NOSH editor Carol Ortenberg and BevNET assistant editor Marty Caballero for a conversation that included his take on why “brands need to have a core,” and controversy surrounding the Dairy Pride Act. 50:15: Elevator Talk: Brittany Fuisz, Founder, Malibu Meals -- We caught up with Brittany, a former Yelp executive, at NOSH Live Winter 2017 where she shared the vision for her brand of pouch-packaged, organic meals. Brands in this episode: Revive Kombucha, GT’s Kombucha, Health-Ade Kombucha, Good Karma Foods. iTunes Reference: 217554