Today we’d like to introduce you to Mark McTavish.
Mark, we appreciate you taking the time to share your story with us today. Where does your story begin?
I was raised in the apple growing region of Southwest Ontario and started my career in the craft beverage industry at the age of 19. Soon after completing a Bachelor Of Commerce at Canada’s top beverage management school, I established my place in the market by opening one of the first craft beer bars in Canada back in 2003.
After helping to pioneer the craft beer industry in Canada, I followed my other passion and built a successful career in the
commercial fitness business. With a focus on product design and brand development, I spent nearly a decade working with fitness professionals across North America. This path came full circle when I realized my dream to craft the healthiest alcoholic beverages on the planet, a convergence of two industries that until now had seemed an unlikely pairing.
Alright, so let’s dig a little deeper into the story – has it been an easy path overall and if not, what were the challenges you’ve had to overcome?
Where do I start……..I arrived in LA back in 2013 as an immigrant from Canada. No credit, no network, and not legally allowed to work in the US. So what did I decide to do? I entered the fermented beverage industry without any experience fermenting anything, my first batch of cider was 5,000 gallons (talk about going “all in right?”). Developing and manufacturing any product requires tremendous resilience, as there are many failures to fight through.
The entrepreneurial path is filled with struggles, no doubt. At the end of the day, your vision is only your own…..until others begin to see it as well. Building any business requires an incredible amount of time, patience, persistence, and an undying commitment to the vision. There is an old saying…..”if it’s easy, we are probably doing something wrong!”
My father is a career entrepreneur, and my mother is one of the hardest-working people I have ever known. They taught me how to work hard, and they also provided me with the solid base that anchored my experience. I always knew that I could explore the world and then look forward to returning to the love and stability of my family. This developed a confidence within me that has allowed me to dream big and to gamble on myself each day. I thrive on discomfort, as that is where the growth happens.
Alright, so let’s switch gears a bit and talk business. What should we know?
Here at 101 Cider House, we craft the healthiest alcoholic beverages on the planet. 10o% juice, zero sugar, and billions of probiotics in every can! As a mission-driven company, we stand for climate positivity and we plant a tree for every 4-pack sold.
Located in downtown LA, where the 101 Highway begins……our cider house is the original adults only juice bar. All of our juice is sourced from orchards which are located along the 101 corridor, and we rely on spontaneous fermentation to produce our “natural cider”. Nothing is added, and nothing is taken away. As compared to all other alcoholic beverages…..we use less water, we use less energy, and we produce less waste, but we deliver more taste!
Founded in 2015, we started the cider movement in our great city and we have been leading the charge ever since. Like many things here in sunny SoCal, we do it differently. Our ciders are the first in the “Full Spectrum” category of fermented beverages, meaning that our products contain ALL of the outcomes (vitamins, nutrients, organic acids, probiotics, etc.) from fermentation……not just alcohol. Those who consume our products enjoy the best buzz on the planet (known as “The Entourage Effect”, without the negative side effects that are associated with other alcoholic beverages.
Are there any books, apps, podcasts or blogs that help you do your best?
Without a doubt, my investor team has become my greatest resource for personal and professional growth. I worked incredibly hard to assemble a group of trusted advisors and supporters, those who hold me accountable and also cheer my successes. Mentorship is critical to development, I always enjoy being surrounded by others who are further down the path or perhaps have chosen a different path than I.
I don’t do books, but I do plenty of reading online. There are many beverage industry resources that come to mind, such as BevNET and Brewbound. These publications have become a valuable source of news, ideas, and connections that have added value for our business over the years.
My goal as an entrepreneur is to disrupt with intention, forging a new path that better serves consumers and society as a whole. When I look to others for guidance, I focus much of my time on investigating other CPG categories beyond beverage. Broadly speaking, the natural products segment has been a guiding light for me……driven by concepts around sustainability, body positivity, functional ingredients, and products that are changing the culture of consumption in our world. I rely on reputable podcasts and trusted industry publications as sources of ideas and information.
- $12.99/4-pack (all products are line priced)
- Email: firstname.lastname@example.org
- Website: 101cider.com
- Instagram: @101cider
- Facebook: @101cider
101 Cider House