10 QUESTIONS FOR: is a series of short conversations with the people behind Mana. The questions are always the same.
Marek is a co-founder of Mana and, as the Director of Research and Development, our main product technologist. He leads our team of experts in biochemistry, organic chemistry, and food science. He is responsible for where the company sails in terms of product composition, clinical studies and analyses of ingredients, and every other scientific aspect of the manufacture of Mana products.
He has been interested in chemistry since the age of 12, and has a master's degree in organic chemistry from the Faculty of Science at Charles University in Prague, where he researched enantioselective organic synthesis of pharmacologically active substances. As a co-founder of Mana, he has been with the company since it was founded in 2014. It is and always has been a full-time job.
1. What was your dream job as a child?
I wanted to be prime minister. (laughing)
2. What advice would you give a younger version of yourself?
Be more confident.
3. Which song or artist could you listen to all day?
4. If you could hang out with any celebrity, who would it be?
Stanislav Grof. He has an interesting life story and experience in altered states of consciousness.
(Editor’s note.: Stanislav Grof is a Czech psychiatrist who developed the method of holotropic breathing, and in the 1950s did research on LSD in socialist Czechoslovakia.)
5. What do you like most about Mana as a brand?
I like that fact that, in terms of research and development, it’s a progressive company that views food in the context of the 21st century. For me, it’s a symbol of humanity’s crown achievement in the field of food science and technology.
6. When or under what circumstances do you usually drink Mana?
7. Do you like to drink Mana by itself or mix it with other ingredients?
I generally prefer it by itself; that is, with water. But from time to time I like to mix it with other ingredients to make a smoothie.
8. What trait do you value most in people?
I appreciate the simple goodness in people. The humanity.
9. If you could live in another era, when would you live and why?
I’d stick with the now. There’s no reason to change anything. (laughing)
10. Which film title best describes your life story?
That’s a tough one...Interstellar.
Marek and his wife, who shares his passion for chemistry, in the Faculty of Science laboratory at Charles University in Prague. This photo was taken in 2014, the year Mana was founded.