They may have had a gut feeling they would win.

Two brothers behind Soulfresh’s Lo Bros kombucha cola have been recognised in the Australian Organic Awards for Excellence.

Didi and Hsiao Lo’s fermented cola, packed with probiotic bacteria good for gut health, was named best new certified organic product at the awards in Canberra last week.

The brothers started out in Footscray and now export around the world from their Laverton North plant.

Didi said their cola was based on an 1878 recipe and was naturally low in sugar.

It uses tea from the Yarra Valley brewed with springwater from Daylesford. Then they add scoby – a living culture that is a symbiotic colony of bacteria and yeast.

“When we started growing kombucha, what we soon realised is there’s just this wonderful chemistry that occurs,” Didi said. “At the end of about 30 days’ worth of fermentation, you end up with a product which is naturally low in sugar and has these wonderful flavours with a beautiful tanginess and is obviously very beneficial because it has all the probiotics in there.

“You get all these wonderful things that aid digestion; it really helps to promote gut health … so many health issues are now being linked to poor diet and poor gut.

“A healthy gut is a key to happiness – five times more seretonin is produced in your stomach than is produced in your brain.”

The awards were hosted by not-for-profit peak industry group Australian Organic.