Chef Papa Lee & Bob Giggin | Portland, Oregon
Papa Lee is a veteran, in partnership with Bob Giggin, owner of Papa Lee CBD Convections.
They met years ago through baseball on the ball field, Bob was the ballplayer. They formed a relationship, and became friends, while Lee was the owner of Papa Lees Kitchen.
Lee: We were the number one food cart here in Oregon two years in a row.
But I found myself self-medicating, basically killing myself. So my significant other at the time and I were having a baby Cora, and at this time in my life, I was supposed to be retired. I was either going to kill myself working in a food cart, or jump into CBD and help other veterans. I decided to save my life too and get into the medicinal portion of hemp to help adult veterans with PTSD, military sexual trauma, aches and pains, sleep, and stuff like that. Then I went to Bob and I needed some money.
Bob: He (Lee) contacted me, and I was wanting to partner up and try to get this thing started. I wasn’t able to bring a bunch of the table except for the possibility of helping build stuff, and move stuff. I’ve always been good with building things on my hands. He’s always the mouthpiece and able to make food. So it worked out well together. And so we partnered up and it’s been a process, and I gotta say, he keeps his nose to the grind and keeps rolling.
Lee: He also owns Rightway Builders LLC out of Eugene. He helps a lot of people, veterans, and ex-cons. People that have been in trouble. He gives them a hand up, not a handout. We are here now, just trying to build something because we’re both at an age where we need to have something that’s gonna help us to retire.
We also have a medical growth called Excellence, which is doing good. We finally figured it out the hard way, but we’re doing good. We’re gonna be all right. The CBD business, there are so many people involved in it, you got all these different companies that that are backed by big money. But our products are superior to theirs, because we don’t cut corners. We don’t put hemp oil in our stuff. We extract things by specific CBG and CBN. Mike, our other partner, he’s able to put together our formulations and I do all the flavor, and boom! What’s good about our product is what’s on the bottle is inside the bottle, and it works. Especially when you help veterans it’s very important that we match what we say with what we do.
Our gummy line is made from honey and pectin. There’s no processed sugar. There are no animal products in it. Our gummies are all about the temperature. You can put it on your dashboard and at 120 degrees or 130 degrees, it’s not going to melt because we discovered the temperature to hit to get that on them that perfect edible.
Danielle: Have you had a chance to try them, Bob?
Bob: I’m not a big edibles type of person. So, while the average person would take one I’m the person that takes one half. I had an experience with too many of them. And it was not an experience that I would ever recommend to anybody. But it definitely is an eye-opener.
Playing ball for years, everything hurts, and being on your knees set and tile you can definitely feel the difference when you eat something like that at the end of the day when you’re just relaxing. I don’t ever recommend people eating a gummy and getting behind the wheel. I do not ever recommend people drinking and driving. I’m not that type of person. I am a person that when the day is done, and you’re not going anywhere, that’s when it’s time to kick back. But don’t put yourself behind the wheel afterward.
Lee: He’s a phenomenal ballplayer, by the way. One thing about Bob, he does what he says. I work on that; I try really hard to be that way too. So, it’s a good friendship. Even though there are times
where we yell at each other we’ll hug it out – Not like that, you know?
He’s compassionate about veterans, I’m a veteran, Army Ranger, and I love our country. But I’m not happy with what’s going on with my body right now because of the things that I was exposed to, that they finally figured out 20-something years later. I’m paying for it, but I still love my country. And my passion is to help veterans.
Being a military sexual trauma survivor was something that used to be hard to talk about, but I’m a military sexual trauma survivor. And being a ranger and all this other stuff, I want to get in my car, go to the airport because I know where the couple lives and want to fly back to Pennsylvania. I want to take them both out, but I won’t, because I have got family. But that goes through my head. I still fight with that PTSD. So, we started a program called Wounded Not Broken, fighting against military sexual trauma. Since I have been having health issues, we have put everything on hold for a second. Once we come back, we’re gonna start that podcast back up and fundraising to get it funded because military sexual trauma can be stopped. It can be stopped by the power that runs the base.
There are still bases where they don’t have that camaraderie with those running the post, so they still have sexual traumas going on. And it’s heartbreaking. One victim is too many. It happens to men, the men have caught up percentage-wise to the woman and it’s disheartening
For the longest time, it was hard for me to talk about. I’m lucky I woke up during the assault, or I would have been really violated. I was already violated. But I woke up in the middle of it and I got one by the collarbone and one by the hair, while I was screaming, just rolling around because I couldn’t feel anything. nothing. The next thing I know the Sargent Majors door got bashed in and I’m waking up in Heidelberg Hospital.
What’s sad is that they’re not being held accountable. You look at our society right now. Look at the guy that died in jail, Jeffrey Epstein, that lived with that lady that’s in prison, Ghislaine Maxwell. Look at the manifest of all the people who went over to that guy’s Island, all those names on the blackness, and all those names on the videos. Not one video has been leaked to our society because they’re in control; the media controls it. The big people are controlling it. They’re all hiding it. So, they’re trying to make it okay. It’s not okay. Just like they want to try to teach our children about sexuality between kindergarten to third grade. No way!
What events do you have coming up this spring?
Lee: We’re working on it right now. There are events coming up. We got another guy Doran that owns Bomb Squad. We’re working with him on the MMA portion, which is right below us. Down there, we will have a full-scale MMA fighting cannabis club.
Bob: I don’t know how much you follow MMA, but it’s come more towards the acceptance of cannabis, and medicinal understanding than a lot of sports, because of the fact that these guys are their elite athletes, these guys go in there and they beat each other half to death. It’s a whole different world. It’s not like football, it’s not and I’m not saying take anything away from any other sports. But these are the men that accept the idea of the medicinal responses. They accept the medicinal behaviors of what we’re making. And so, trying to include those and trying to put those as one, you know, tip to the arrow and trying to get through it all at the same time, I think is a great idea.
Lee: Part of the brand is taking it to the next level. A lot of these guys got injuries and a half, you know what I mean? And they gotta heal fast. And so, a lot of them use CBD and CBG, and CBN to help sleep and anxiety and to help with pain aches.
And so, I’m pretty sure that there are guys that would like to get high, but these guys don’t, they want to heal fast, and they want to get back in the ring. That’s what we’re gonna be about. This should be launching in about a month.
Bob: A lot of stuff has been shelved, because Lee’s the voice of it, the face of it, and has had medical stuff to deal with. It’s important that he gets back to where it’s back to not worrying about the medical.
I’ve been lucky enough to only have a few issues that ever happened to me. But you go into the hospital, and they tell you, you got this, and this, and if you don’t change this, this and this, you’re dying. So, I completely understand that part. You know, I’ve had that conversation with the doctor, I’ve got my own little sleeping disorders and stuff like that. I’m an absolute workaholic and the doctor told me that if “you don’t change, five years, you’re gonna die.” Running on three hours, two and a half, three hours of sleep for years, and years and years and years. So that’s where for me taking different things that will help me sleep was an important thing.
Lee: We want to bring back America. We stand by veterans and the smaller businesses. We need to come up and show up because we do it right; as veterans, we have to do it right. It’s disheartening that these bigger companies that got all this money and are just throwing stuff out there that’s overpriced.
I picked up a bottle of CBD water just eight months ago, and we had it tested. The bottle said it had 50 milligrams of CBD in it, there were really 10 milligrams in it and the rest of the CBD was all stuck to the bottle. People are buying this stuff based on smoke and mirrors. They are getting ripped off.
But people that get our tinctures come back saying this is the only one that has ever worked. Now, these are veterans that can’t get no sleep doing our Delta 8 tincture – We call it the Good Night tincture (it has CBN CBG CBD Delta eight in it) We always tell them to be careful with this, just start off with a small dose and work your way up.
And then they write me back saying it’s the only thing that ever worked on the market. Some of them have paid $190 for a bottle of sleep from Charlotte’s Web, and it has no effect. Nothing. So we pride ourselves on our product. We CBD have honey. We do tinctures for humans and pets. We’re really proud of our gummies. We do teas and then we’ll start adding more things as we go.
Bob is going to head of all the MMAs. Mike has the formulations and I have the flavors. Also, we want to bring back Portland. What’s happening here is disgusting. All of our ingredients come from Oregon. We do use organic ingredients, but we are not organic certified yet.
Bob: About organic certified pricing; I kind of want to touch base on the (organic) pricing thing, that’s one of the things that really surprised me. Because you’re looking when you go through the stores, and you see those things at the end, you know, $29.99 and you’re like ‘like holy crap.’ And then you think of okay, it comes back to all of the hands that touch it that get paid.
Being in a smaller company, look at the size of the room with it. It probably needs two or three more of these machines here to be able to keep up with the ultimate demand. But I think that people are in it for more than just that to help people. Money makes the world go around, let’s not bullshit anybody. But when it comes down to it, if you’re trying to serve people, and you’d hit that happy medium where you’re going to serve people and you’re going to make money, as opposed to you’re just trying to get rich right now It’s a shocking thing on how much you can actually get the price down and help more people and have a better product. As opposed to smoke and mirrors, filling stuff, the 10% wrapped 40% around the bottom of the bottle because you just didn’t do your research and you’re just cranking it out the door. While people continue to fall for it.
I wish that we had the blind test like the old Coke and Pepsi thing. You know, something like that. 12 o’clock today you one and 12 o’clock tomorrow, you try one. The next day, you come back, and you tell me which one was more effective, you know, something like that because it’s not about what you’re paying for it. It’s about what’s inside the bottle.
Lee: It’s about the passion. We want to help people. We’ve been alive, stayed alive through COVID; it was rough. We were getting ready to go to Japan (with our product). We had just got approved there, which took three years! We teamed up with Green Lush CBD in Kamado and Osaka in Japan. We’re waiting on the FDA to approve the raw product that has to be put it in edibles. We are already ODA-approved. We will start shipping our stuff over there in about a week. That’s like the big stamp, I think it’s all about money. Because we’re already ODA approved. Why do you have to go FDA? But they said once you go wholesale more than retail, you have to switch over to FDA approval.
I think the only a few companies that are in Japan right now, small businesses-wise, but there are two major companies going over there. I don’t know what the companies are, but I know our prices would be superior to theirs. We’re teaming up with Kamado, he is white labeling our brand made in Oregon, the sister city of Japan. We got that tie, so we’ll build his brand by stating it’s made from Oregon at Papa Lee’s Confections. With his label on it, and our label on certain products that we want to adhere to the Japanese people will know what they’re getting.
They will get a product that’s not overpriced. It’s crazy, some of the stuff that they’re paying for over there right now. I couldn’t believe it. I was talking to Kamado last week when he bought 100 grams of CBG. He paid $1500 USD for 100 Grams. That right there goes for $900 over here (in the US) They have taken the product, and Japanese people are starting to catch on to it. We have got to cover the customs. Of course, we have got to cover the taxes, of course, but you don’t need to mark it up 5,000% or whatever.
Kamado is about helping his people. By having prices at an affordable rate the product gets to more people. I’d rather sell to Jim, Sheri, Michelle, and all them people over and over and over and over again rather than one by one for one time. I want you to be a lifelong customer.
We are growing, we have worked hard to get where we’re at. We were in an 800-square-foot spot and now we’re here with Brian _ in the Falcon Art building. He got us two spots, and we have more tables coming in and another handy pack machine. But we’re finding our gummy and tea lines getting ready to explode. It’s about helping people and the effectiveness of it. It is a long road, we’re happy to do what we’re doing. We’re passionate about what we’re doing, helping veterans to enhance the value of their lives is so important. Stopping military sexual trauma is very important to us.
Bob and Lee: Any sexual trauma should not be tolerated. We need to stand together as 99% of Americans are thinking the way we think. There’s only 1% of Americans that are the far far left, or whatever you want to call them. Right now, they control the media and control the voices being heard. If we would stand up together and not worry, we could overcome them.
Bob: My belief on that stuff is that people need to be held accountable. I know that in today’s day and age you are not able to make an example out of people. But I got my own beliefs that if you lined the streets up with sick freaks hanging from poles, less people are going to be doing it. Instead, today, people are hiding behind other people and getting off because they got money. There was an article I was reading the other day, it was about a man’s kid that had gotten molested. They (officials) let the guy go, he (the father) went and killed him and now he’s (the father) arrested. They said strangely enough that every man and every woman when they have a child, they say they will kill for their child. This man did it. Like every man and every woman says when they have a kid, I will protect it with my life. This guy did it and he’s now in jail.
Lee: Yeah, we have a little girl and we have a rule with her. Rule number one if anybody tells you ‘Don’t tell mommy and daddy what you do’ it’s because they’re telling you to do something that you’re not supposed to be doing. We co-parent, we get along g, and we’ve raised a beautiful little girl. You know, it must stop up here. That’s the problem. It’s up here that’s doing it and down here are the ones that are funneling up to them and getting them the kids. It’s disgusting, just heartbreaking.
Things are on hold right now so I can get myself healthy. Hopefully in a month or so I will be ready to rock. In the meantime, we’re gonna go down to Vegas and do a show. We started a fundraiser to fund this program; so, we could get brochures, pay for the podcast, pay to help people, pay for the gas, and those flying in from parts of the country. We asked just for $1. I asked for $1 from every American veteran, disabled veteran, or non-veteran. And all we raised was $650. Tell me what’s wrong with that.
Where are people’s minds, and where is their heart at? It’s obviously not in wanting to stop this. They say it, but I don’t see action. They say it coming out their mouth, but their actions are completely different. They’re donating to BLM. While those running BLM are over here buying homes and everything and not one penny of that money went to the organizations that are down here trying to help the homeless people, their brothers, and sisters that needed that money. They never saw one penny.
We’re going to try to launch it again. And I’m hoping people will step up and help us do this. Because we need help. If I was a millionaire, I wouldn’t ask for anything. But I’m not. I am a just disabled veteran military sexual trauma victim that’s trying to fight for my brothers and sisters, to end military and non-military assaults.
Do you feel like those that haven’t been a part of sexual trauma hold a sense of responsibility?
Lee: I worked at a strip club as a bouncer when I got out of the service while Samantha was pregnant to make some money until I got my disability. I only lasted about a month and a half because it was just like every time I went in there, I felt dirty coming out.
Finally, one night, I went in there and I said, I can’t do it anymore. I came home and Samantha said “I’m glad you stopped. I don’t want to say anything though because we needed the money.” But by me going in there and doing that, that supported sex trafficking. Just being a bouncer puts me on that team and I’m not on that team. It’s sad.
Granted, there are some strippers that go in there that are working for college. I know a couple of them. They did that literally to pay for college. One had a kid and had a deadbeat dad, and she stripped through college to take care of a kid. Awesome person, and now works for the state of Tennessee. But there’s a bunch of them that are part of sex trafficking. It’s horrible and when does it stop? When does it stop?
We need to compile together and bring back American, bring us back. Here I am Native American, Spanish, and German. I served my country. Look at the color of my skin. I love my country.