When Trey Lockerbie discovered kombucha could make staying healthy fun and even delicious, he became determined to brew the perfect batch.
Before launching Better Booch, Trey and his partner Ashleigh Lockerbie spent years on the road touring as traveling musicians. Life on the road can be tiring, let alone tough on the body, and so the couple was always on the lookout for ways to boost their immune systems. Trey says they had tried kombucha before, but nothing really stood out.
They decided to dedicate their time to experimenting in their own kitchen.
After countless iterations and taste tests with friends and family, they launched Better Booch, the bubbly, fermented tea filled with probiotics many have come to love.
Back in 2012, their production was entirely self-operated.
Trey and Ashleigh were paying to use a commercial kitchen from the hours of 12-3am just to complete the final stages of the brewing process.
“It took a couple of years for us to really dial in our [recipe], and our actual process”, Trey says.
Taking the time to perfect their kombucha, Better Booch set up booths around the Los Angeles at local farmers markets to increase brand awareness and get customer feedback.
“I want to encourage every entrepreneur to set up at farmers markets, because that was our initial source of income for the first few months, [and] you get this immediate customer reaction, no matter what it is, good or bad,” Trey says.
These in-person customer experiences were key to growing their business, and nailing down their kombucha formula.
Trey, who looks after the operations and financial side of Better Booch, looked towards capital funding when it came time to expand the business.
“It’s not so bad raising outside capital, it doesn’t have to be a scary thing as long as you are intentional about who you approach, and who you take on,” Trey says.
With strong investment support, Trey has been able to build long-lasting relationships with his consumers and even retailers such as Whole Foods.
Tune in to part one of this two episode special on Shopify Masters to learn how Trey Lockerbie took his passion for kombucha and created a valuable and accessible beverage company.