Our group first heard about Quokka Brew through Brady bringing it up in class. A Polycast was going to report on the company, and so we decided to investigate further into the founding and progress of this supposedly “jitterless” coffee. Quokka Brew is based in Berkeley, so we were worried that the more visual aspects of our project were going to be hard to obtain. Luckily, business senior and Quokka Brew’s Chief Revenue Officer Sahil Gupta is a Cal Poly student.
The entire Quokka team, who all attend UC Berkeley, responded quickly to our emails and were very eager to share their story behind their up and coming business. Luckily, the group had a ton of pictures that we were able to use as well. We were able to speak on the phone to the Berkeley team to gather more information about the journey that led to what Quokka Brew is now as well as understand how the product works.
Caffeine, the drug that gives you the boost your feel when drinking coffee, constricts the blood vessels. This causes the body to work extra hard to pump blood, leading to anxiety and the inevitable crash once the high wears off. Amino acids, on the other hand, can dilate the blood vessels. The team had tampered with different amino acids that would be able to counteract this constriction of blood vessels with amino acids.
“Quokka Brew has served to be an amazing story to report about. Their revolutionary product of ‘jitterless” coffee is one that could potentially make a huge impact on the coffee industry,” Hasan said.
After weeks of hard work, taste testing and using friends as guinea pigs for their coffee trials, the crew was ready to send their product over to Drink Labs, a company based in Los Angeles that solidifies the science behind business ideas.
“We came up to them with our idea and all of our findings and they basically finalized everything. They took our idea and made it a reality,” UC Berkeley business senior and CEO/Co-founder of Quokka Brew Ofek Arush said.
Gupta met Emily and I by the business building for our first in-person interview. Between pitching the idea to us and his anecdotes about the humble beginnings of the company, he was one of our most valuable pieces to this story. While living in the Bay Area for an internship over this summer, Arush pitched the idea to Gupta and gave him some of the product to try. Gupta was immediately on board and used his internship to spread the word about Quokka. The drink is all over UC Berkeley’s campus, and Quokka Brew want to bring this craze to Cal Poly.
The members of Quokka Brew’s passion for their product and drive to make this company take off was exciting to witness. As college students, we all would love a coffee with no negative side effects. Gupta brought some coffee for us to try and I was more than impressed.
“This was such an interesting story to tackle. Quokka is doing things people don’t think is possible and it was fun really getting to know the team and their product,” Emily said.
The next step for us was hearing about the nutritional benefits and downfalls of drinking coffee from a professional. We reached out to Campus Dining who directed us towards the Cal Poly Registered Dietician Kaitlin Gibbons. Hasan and Emily were able to meet Gibbons in her office located right next to 805 Kitchen. Gibbons explained the constriction of blood vessels as well as something we hadn’t thought about before. The amount of sugar in coffee can also have negative side effects on the drinker on top of what we already experience with caffeine. Quokka Brew only contains one gram of sugar and only 15 calories, proving once again their superiority over your regular Starbucks coffee.
After collecting the facts from multiple sources, we felt confident in our understanding of what Quokka Brew really is.
“Telling Quokka Brew’s story was an awesome especially knowing we are contributing to their recognition and hopefully success. We are the first to be writing about Quokka and that’s special,” Camilla said.