VIRGINIA BEACH, Va. (WAVY) — A local kombucha company is encouraging the support of small businesses during the coronavirus pandemic.
Nathan Elstein, who is the founder of Maha Kombucha, says they mostly sell products wholesale and rely on traffic into businesses such as restaurants and breweries to move their product.
“So when those closed, with not having retail customers come in and sit down, it really directly affected us. We understand and we’re grateful for the community’s support we’re getting through the website and farmer’s market,” he said.
Elstein started the business in his kitchen two years ago.
Since then, it’s taken off and they’ve recently celebrated their one-year anniversary of being in a larger location on S. Birdneck Road.
“The growth has been phenomenal. It’s just a testament here to show how much people love kombucha here in Virginia Beach,” he said.
It’s grown so much that you can now find the kombucha on the shelves of Whole Foods. Elstein says their product was placed in stores mid-March and has also helped with them keep up business.
On top of that, the company has also had to come up with other ideas.
They are partnering with Seasonal Roots, an online farmers market that delivers in Maryland and Virginia.
Maha Kombucha was also looking forward to their new flavor that was made specifically for the Something in the Water festival. Elstein says they’re grateful they were chosen to be a vendor but now they’ll have to wait until next year.
Despite the setbacks, he’s hopeful that people will continue to support businesses like his. It’s easy to help multiple businesses at once by going into restaurants where their products are located and buying their items.
“All of our neighbors, restaurants, and grocery stores and supporting them by buying a bottle of kombucha supports them and in-kind supports us. We have a philosophy of living your life lighter. So everything we do hopefully can help you live life a little more easily and lighter without making a big impact,” he said. “We encourage everyone to do something kind every day even if you’re not buying a bottle of kombucha. If we can help remind people to smile and be happy, even if everything is a little complicated, we feel like we’re very successful.”
Elstein says that Maha Kombucha produces zero waste and uses recycled bottles.
They also are releasing a seasonal flavor later this month for the strawberry season.
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