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Product Review (submitted on April 23, 2014):
Received my dehydrated scoby and kit promptly. The kit included everything needed along with excellent instructions. Unfortunately, my experience has been similar to other customers. After 30 days, there was little sign of activity other than some sediment on the bottom of the jar. The PH had dropped so it may be working but the tea was still very sweet and just tasted like sweet tea with vinegar added. I bottled and let it set out for 5 days and it did produce some carbonation but still tasted like sweet tea and vinegar. Made my second batch according to directions. Eight days into the second batch but the tea still looks clear and doesn't seem to be doing much. No sign of baby scoby but instructions said it make take several batches. I trust Cultures for Health and expect it will eventually produce as expected. However, the length of time required tries one's patience. I suggest Cultures for Health provide an option to purchase an already hydrated and active scoby as other sites do. After reading on the web, I decided to try making a scoby from a store bought bottle of Kombucha. I used 2/3 of bottle of store-bought kombucha in a quart jar. This batch became cloudy right away and formed a scoby within a week. The scoby is getting thicker each day and the PH is dropping as expected. It looks like this process will create a batch of Kombucha and a hydrated scoby in about two weeks. Cultures for Health has an excellent web site, great training videos and excellent customer service. I'm sure they can improve this scoby process and experience for their customers.
Response from CFH: With regard to shipping dehydrated cultures: We fall under both state and federal jurisdiction and comply with all state and federal food processing, handling, and shipping laws. We also value the safety of our customers above all else and therefore we not only comply with all applicable laws and best practices, but also with liability insurance guidelines, etc.
Please contact customer support for troubleshooting advice before discarding product. Many cultures can be saved with minor adjustments.