Cannabosses Vol. 3: Adrian Garcia of Shisha Leafa
Every week, dozens of companies are entering the rapidly growing cannabis space around the world. We’re seeing tons of infused products, a million new THC gummies brands (seriously please stop), and a lot of people trying their hand at growing flower. In the plethora of emerging products it’s hard to stand out, but one product recently caught our attention: Shisha Leafa. This hemp based shisha is unique and delicious, we caught up with the founder of the company, Adrian Garcia, to learn more about his unique product and journey in the world of business thus far. Check out the intervew, and be sure to try Sheesha Leafa coming to a headshop or hookah lounge near you!
Res: For those who don’t know, introduce yourselves and tell us about your product, Shisha Leafa.
Adrian: My name is Adrian Garcia and I am the Founder and CEO of Shisha Leafa. Shisha Leafa is a hemp based Shisha with no tobacco, no nicotine, no CBD, and no THC. We are a non-toxic, non-addictive and healthier alternative to traditional tobacco Shisha, it’s pure by nature and so clean you can eat it!
Res: How long have you been working on the product itself? And when was your first sale?
Adrian: The product was originally created in 2018 by my business partner Jonnell Miller. It actually started off as a THC product. That company dissolved and the product was no longer manufactured. About two years later I asked Jonnell if I could buy the formula from him. Instead of making it a THC product, I wanted to take all the cannabinoids out to make it more marketable world-wide. Our first sale was in Nov. 2020. A good friend of mine wanted to show support and so she purchased our first order.
Res: In your opinion, why should people smoke Shisha Leafa as opposed to Tobacco based traditional shisha?
Adrian: Two reasons. According to the World Health Organization as of 2022, 7 million people die each year from direct tobacco use and we wanted to offer a different non-addictive option for someone who may be trying to quit. And because 41% of Shisha smokers do not smoke other tobacco products, we wanted to give them a cleaner, non-toxic product that eliminates the headache and stomach ache normally associated with smoking traditional shisha.
Res: What’s the process exactly to make straight hemp leaves into the final delicious product?
Adrian: So the secret sauce is really in how we process it. The biggest fan leaves are the best for Shisha Leafa and we want to give a huge shout out to Rad Hemp, our main Hemp supplier. My guy Jonnell sciences it up and BAM it’s done and ready to serve!
Res: I know the whole point is that it doesn’t get you high, but I have to ask is there plans for a THC version down the line?
Adrian: Absolutely! We are white labeling to companies that would like to use our Shisha to create a new and unique product skew for them. We are also in the beginning stages of working with a MIP to create a new THC brand starting in the Colorado market.
Res: How many flavors are in the works, and what are y’all personal favorites?
Adrian: Currently we have 4 flavors. Lemon Berry Tart, Mango, Orange Chai Latté, and Cucumber. Our goal with our flavors is to create a flavor profile that is consistent with more natural realistic flavors. Take our Lemon Berry Tart for example, the lemon tastes like a lemon, you can taste and smell the berries with a tart pastry finish. This just so happens to be my favorite flavor as well. We are continually looking to add new flavors. We are working on a Mint and a BlueBerry Cookie right now.
Res: What’s been the biggest challenge you’ve faced thus far building the company?
Adrian: Banking and Merchant Service Processing has been our biggest hurdle, as is with most cannabis companies. We are in a good spot now but it was a process.
Res: Where can people find Shisha Leafa to try or buy?
Adrian: Our Shisha and our modern, flat, light up Shisha Leafa Hookahs are sold online at ShishaLeafa.com, and you can also send us a DM on Instagram @ShishaLeafa and Facebook @ShishaLeafa. We also have modern, flat light up hookahs for sale as well. We are also in the 40 Thieves Hookah Lounge in Colorado Springs and locations in Indiana and Oklahoma.
Res: Where do you hope to see your brand in 5 years?
Adrian: If we keep pace with our current rate of growth, we will be in a position to provide 100’s of well paying jobs and our product will be sold in multiple countries world-wide within the next 5 years.
Res: Any other thoughts or shoutouts?
Adrian: I am grateful and blessed to have a huge support network in my family and friends and I know with their support we can take this project to where we want it to go, thank you. Huge shout out to Krysta Jones and Sanja Ganja of the THC Girls and The Highly Connected App who were integral in the branding and marketing of Shisha Leafa. Mario Salazar of Flawless Website Design who created our sexy website. Finally, big thank you to my good friend Nick Torres at Get Em High for this opportunity to share the Shisha Leafa story.