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The NJFPA Stradley Ronon Food Forum

This series will focus on stories about the people changing the face of the food processing in the Garden State through innovation, hard work and lending a caring hand. The NJFPA will endeavor to tell the stories that might now get attention in other mainstream channels.

If this series inspires and provides actionable ideas, it will achieve its aims.

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Nov 23, 2021

Welcome to the fourth episode of Season 2 of the NJFPA Stradley Ronon Food Forum Podcast. In this episode, Bill Mandia, Partner at Stradley Ronon Stevens & Young, speaks with Luke Bowen, co-founder and president of Evil Genius Brewing. They talk about the many surprises and pivots along his professional journey.

Guest Bio:

An article on starts off by saying that “when life gives you lemons, you make lemonade; Evil Genius Beer Company founder Luke Bowen did just that when he took the economic crash of 2008 and created a brewing company. Bowen fell in love with beer from an early age as he was exposed to quality craft brewing through his father, an avid beer fan himself.

After going to college and securing a job Bowen was safe and financially stable, but wasn’t fulfilled – “I had my degree and the fancy job after college that you’re supposed to get and I just wasn’t happy at all” the article continues.

Today, Evil Genius is one of top 250 breweries by volume in the US, with distribution in Pennsylvania, Delaware, New Jersey, Massachusetts, Connecticut, and Rhode Island. Outside of Evil Genius, Luke has Co-Authored Academic Papers which have been published Internationally on Advertising Strategy, Market Research Best Practices, and Corporate Social Responsibility.

Listeners will hear: 

  • How recessions can be the best time to start a business. 
  • How COVID changes affected packaging, distribution, and supply chain.
  • Luke’s biggest surprise at what his MBA didn’t prepare him for. 
  • The benefits of switching from glass to aluminum.
  • How he is planning on taking advantage of this “transitional time” to strengthen his business.
  • That the human side of the business is just as crucial as the nuts and bolts. 

Download the Edited Interview Transcript