Emma Risvanis, co-owner & managing director of Bod Kombucha

fairfield | Australia
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Who are you and what is your background? 

Hi there, My name is Emma Risvanis and I am one of the owners of Bod Kombucha. My background is in fashion for the most part but as of the last 4 years, I have been involved in health food manufacturing. We have 2 company’s - Paleo Pure (3+ years now) and Bod Kombucha (9 months old)

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Your current job: 

My current role is managing director for both companies. My partners are part-time and I am full time.

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In which city: 

Fairfield, Victoria Australia.

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How did you discover kombucha? 

My business partner and I were home brewers starting about 4 years ago when I went “paleo” and absolutely loved being able to give something to the kids that was functional and low in sugar. 

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What prompted you to start your company?

 Nicole & I had been talking about brewing for quite some time whilst we ran Paleo Pure. We saw an opportunity in the market and had an opportunity to acquire some very basic brewing equipment to get started. This got us a foot in the door with our distributors that we were currently working with via our other company, Paleo Pure. We had our own brand called BOD and developed the range to encompass 7 flavours of Kombucha and now supply the entire country of Australia.

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What makes your product unique? 

We develop, brew & bottle the entire range in-house using local ingredients and suppliers. We cold press all of our ingredients as opposed to using fruit juice concentrates that some of our competitors use. We do not back sweeten with any sweeteners either. Our bottles are clear and our branding very simple, letting the product do all the talking.

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What do you want to convey through your brand image? 

Our branding on the bottle is numbered and is not gimmicky. 

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What are the main challenges in your company? 

Right now space is a challenge with the rate we are expanding. Being able to anticipate the growth and plan the next moves for a new facility are crucial to our success. 

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What tools are essential for your work (app, software)? 

Given fermentation is a slow process, having superior staff and taking care of them is our no. 1 priority. The brews must be cared for, monitored, logged and tested daily. We rely on human ability for the most part. We also have some very expensive bottling equipment that we have just ad commissioned and this requires a high level of skill to run. We nurture our staff to ensure they are working at their optimum when n they are in. For example, we cook a nutrient dense lunch for the team daily and all sit down together to take that time and enjoy…then it’s back to work! 

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A word to define what type of worker you are: 

I roll up my sleeves and work alongside my team when required and delegate where I need to. I find I can demand far more respect this way and the team always go over and above when required.

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What does your office space look like? 

Our brewing facility was built in the 60’s and 70’s..so my office space (when I get there) is a pretty daggy 70’s factory office. I give it my homely touch by having a few pot plants around. My MacBook comes with my everywhere = mobile office. 

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Do you have a way to organise your days to optimise your work? 

I am a list writer. And in emails, I flag the emails I need to go back to as we get so many it can be overwhelming at times. I like to end each day by reviewing my list and making sure I know when I need to do the next day (so I can mentally prepare)

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What tips would you give to improve productivity? 

Have a plan, discuss it with the team and listen to the staff. I am not always the best person to make a decision on how something needs to be done, so trusting in the team and their opinion is very valuable. We have all come from different backgrounds and can all contribute in different ways.

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What is the best advice you have been given? 

Oh boy..this is a hard one, I have had such a varied career before what I am doing now so it is hard to apply when I had been told in my fashion days to what I do now. I do know that I always go with my gut. I have a strong intuition and trust in that.

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What are your end-of-day and early-day routine? 

I am an early person for exercise. I have 2 young kids so the morning is a time for me to do a class before the household wakes. I am up at 5.30am. End of the day in the office normally involved reviewing the list of what was done in the day, I check my diary in case I forgot anything and mentally prep for the next day.

 

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Apart from your computer and your phone, what gadget cannot you do without? 

They are the only 2 gadgets I have. I am not that teched out…

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upcoming products or projects? 

We have just launched a new flavour, No, 7 Apple Ginger & Lime which is amazing..and have a new line coming out…but can’t spill the beans just yet!!

bodkombucha.com.au | facebook.com/bodkombucha |