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Spotlight on Dan Larsen: Creating a Career That Suits His Lifestyle

Lauren Marinigh | February 27, 2017

After years of working 12 hour days in the kitchen, Dan Larsen realized he was missing out on the things in life that he valued the most, and ultimately this is what led him to building his own business which allowed him to have the lifestyle he desired. Culture Craft Kombucha makes premium, small-batch kombucha featuring locally farmed and foraged products from the Pacific Northwest. He works to source as much product as possible from farmers in British Columbia to create kombucha that is made from the highest quality, organic ingredients.

This focus on working with the community to source his ingredients for his kombucha is one of the reasons that Dan has been able to attract and maintain a solid customer base. “Our approach to flavouring our kombucha is to use high quality product from our region that resonates with local buyers,” he shares. Being part of the community is one of Culture Craft Kombucha’s core values and dictates how they make challenging decisions whether it’s in regards to sustainable ingredients, packing or vendors. The combination of being so focused on supporting the local community, mixed with the growing popularity of kombucha has made Dan’s products a quickly growing favourite in BC.

As Dan was working 60 hours a week as a chef, he worked with some amazing mentors and the highest quality seasonal produce available which helped him when starting his own business. However, Dan didn’t quit his job to pursue his passion for developing kombucha, instead he juggled both his demanding job as a chef through the start-up phase of his business. “There were many early mornings and late nights and times where I felt like giving up,” he explained. “Through it all, I have learned to hustle and to be as efficient as I can and I am now so grateful that I persevered.”

Juggling both a day job and a start-up can seem impossible to some entrepreneurs but with Dan’s passion for the business he wanted to start and the ability for him to work on his start-up on a flexible basis made it a bit easier. He also shared a few other tips on how in the early stages of his business he made this work:

  • Don’t take your work home with you. Having a job which allows you to unplug when you are not there will give you time and energy to put towards your business.
  • Have a good understanding on how much money you need to earn at your job to pay your personal expenses.
  • Maintain clear boundaries with your employer in regards to your business. Your days “off” need to be respected and consistent.

Although starting up on top of his job as a chef wasn’t easy, the support Dan received from Futurpreneur Canada helped him get his business off the ground. Futurpreneur helped Dan develop a thorough business plan, provided him with the start-up capital needed and a fantastic mentor who is there to help him along his entrepreneurial journey. “The organization also helped me to attend the Feeding Growth Seminar series which focused on all aspects of owning and growing a progressive food company,” he shared.

The Futurpreneur team can’t wait to continue to see Dan grow his business. Currently Culture Craft Kombucha can be found in various locations across Vancouver and the North Shore. To learn more, visit their website here.

Written By: Lauren Marinigh, Social Media & Content Specialist, Futurpreneur Canada