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Does kombucha need to be refrigerated?

Does kombucha need to be refrigerated? Yes, and here’s why… 

Truly raw and live kombucha, like Better Booch, is packed full of probiotics, yeast, and enzymes that need to stay cold in order to have any benefit to your body. If you don’t keep your kombucha cold, you harm all of the living organisms in the brew and basically say buh-bye to all of the good stuff that can help boost your health. 

Kombucha should not be pasteurized.

Food borne pathogens like listeria, salmonella, E.Coli (found in dairy, meat, and produce) can’t live in kombucha because of its naturally low PH. Pathogens can’t grow in kombucha because most pathogens need a higher PH to survive.

Pasteurization is a process in which foods are treated to eliminate pathogens and extend shelf life. It can be done two ways; one way is to heat the brew above 140°F degrees, in order to kill the live organisms. The other pasteurization method is high pressure pasteurization, or HPP, which involves putting the product into a machine where it’s squeezed; the pressure then breaks down the live organisms. 

Kombucha contains many live organisms like probiotics, yeast, enzymes, that need to stay alive in order to benefit our bodies. And because there are no bad pathogens that can live in kombucha, when you pasteurize it you’re just killing off the good organisms. 


What about companies adding probiotics after the fact?

Our gut microbiomes are lush ecosystems with trillions of living microorganisms that play a crucial role in our overall health. Building a robust, diverse population of probiotics in the gut can help crowd out harmful bacteria and help the immune system function in a more powerful way.

According to Harvard Medical School, “fermented foods are the best, as probiotic supplements, which are typically sold over the counter, are reserved to treat specific ailments as suggested by your doctor, and not recommended for everyday use.” 

So, if you’re pasteurizing your kombucha and adding powdered probiotics after the fact, you’re missing out on the rich ecosystem that comes with fermentation and harming the beneficial bacteria in the brew. Because in order for fermented products like kombucha to deliver any probiotic benefits, the probiotic bacteria must be alive when you consume them. 

That’s all just a fancy way of saying that pasteurized kombucha, that doesn’t need to be refrigerated, is missing out on all the good stuff that you hope to get from your brew! 


Refrigeration preserves the brew.

We’ve tried it all when it comes to brewing kombucha and have been around the block oh so many times. Our brewers are experts and refrigerating the kombucha stops the brew at the optimal place. If you’re shipping live kombucha that’s warm, you run the risk of compromising the taste profile that the brewers intended – and we’re all about getting that flavor profile juuuuuust right. 


Cold shipping isn’t the easy way BUT it is the Better way.

We’re not going to lie, cold shipping is hard. It’s definitely not the easy way to do things. But ultimately, it’s the right way to do things. We care about our brew and labeling accurately, so we ship our booch cold so you can get all of the benefits without sacrificing the taste. Plus you get to enjoy an ice cold booch right out of the box… So what’s not to love? 


So, does kombucha need to be refrigerated?

Yes! When choosing your next booch go for the unpasteurized kind that still has all of the live organisms intact, so you can enjoy all of the health benefits.

Want to get ice cold kombucha delivered to your door (that’s full of naturally occurring probiotics and their benefits)? Then head on over to our shop and grab your favorite flavor, or try our variety pack to sample them all.