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The Official Whole Foods Market® Blog

Local Producer: Buchi Kombucha

An ancient cultured beverage with origins in the Far East, kombucha tea has been revered for thousands of years as "the Elixir of Life" and “the Tea of Immortality.” It’s made by fermenting tea and sugar with a kombucha culture, resulting in an effervescent drink.

Sarah Schomber and Jeannine Bucher, two moms from Asheville, North Carolina, met through their kids and serendipitously realized that they both brewed kombucha at home using a similar recipe. 

They found it to be an excellent alternative to conventional soda. So they teamed up and after a year of experimentation, created their own unique recipe. The bold tasting fermented drink was so popular with family and friends that they brewed a little extra to sell at the local farmers market and their business, Buchi, was born.

With kombucha fans clamoring for more, they transformed an old warehouse into an eco-conscious brewery and became the first woman-owned commercial kombucha brewery in the southeast.

Buchi applied for a Local Producer Loan from Whole Foods Market® to help them purchase additional equipment for their new location.

This equipment will help them expand their business and sell their kombucha in our stores in Alabama, Georgia, North Carolina, South Carolina and Tennessee. Not only does Buchi create hand-crafted kombucha, but they also adhere to a transformative business philosophy.

An essential part of Buchi’s business model is playing an active role in building a better community. They are guided by the principle that the power of business can solve social and environmental problems. They believe corporations will have greater economic opportunities when they embrace a philosophy that says "we can do well at being good.”

Their mission is to return to wholesome nutrient-rich, regionally produced food that nourishes our bodies, our environment and the local economy. That’s an ambitious and worthy goal and we’re honored that we could help!