The story of Humm begins with a conversation at a kitchen table.
Humm founders Michelle and Jamie spent hours laughing and drinking Michelle’s homebrewed kombucha, a recipe she learned from her mother-in-law and had spent years perfecting.
It was 2008, the market had just crashed, Bend was bumming and Jamie and Michelle were having a ball. “It must be the kombucha!” Jamie exclaimed. After her first sip, the next words out of her mouth were, “This is amazing! I can sell this to everyone!”
The homebrew had a taste like nothing she’d had before, and the healthy qualities of the beverage, full of vitamin B and anti-oxidants, made them exuberant. If they could be this happy and feel this great, why not share it with everyone!?
The duo began brewing in Michelle’s kitchen and named their company Kombucha Mama. “We felt like it was our job to take care of our community like a mother would take care of their child,” Michelle says. To this day, they believe the same thing. “Our ‘community’ just keeps growing, that’s all.” They began their business by delivering gallon glass jars (like the milkman used to!) door to door in a Prius. Customers would leave their empty gallons from the week before on their doorstep with $20 under the mat and come home to find a full one waiting. That summer, they began introducing their brew to more people at the Bend Farmer’s Market and started developing new flavor combinations to try with their original brew.
But as much kombucha as they made there was still no keeping up with the demand, so they moved into a tiny brewing facility and hired a small and dedicated staff. The gallon jugs were replaced by kegs, the Prius by a delivery van, and it wasn’t long before demand, now extending across Oregon, necessitated another move, this time to a 5,000 square foot automated facility.
Though they loved being (and still are) the “Kombucha Mamas,” Jamie and Michelle determined that it was time to find a name to match their aspirations. Something more universal and inclusive. So with the move came a change in name, to Humm, and the hiring of dozens of ‘Humm-sters’ to work at this semi-large scale brewery. They found people who shared not only their passion for brewing excellent kombucha, but also the positivity and love of life the company was founded on.
Two women shared a dream of bringing kombucha to the masses, and every day since then has brought them closer to the fulfillment of that dream. Today, just a few short years after that fateful kitchen conversation, Humm is available in 50 states as well as Sweden, with further expansion plans around the corner. We’ve just moved into a 40,000 square foot production facility to accommodate the ever-growing desire for this great product. Through it all, the company has maintained and continues to focus on the core values of Optimism, Healthy Business, Partnership and Quality that Jamie and Michelle began the company with.