CBD used thoughtfully as part of a holistic wellness routine can be key to pain alleviation, better sleep, and improved overall well-being. One of the many individuals interested in holistic wellness is our guest, Matthew Gagne, the founder of Flock Goods.
In this episode, Matthew shares his incredible journey of recovering from a terrible accident, and finding pain relief with CBD. He also shares the story behind the creation of his own quality supply chain of CBD products. Tune in to hear about how Matthew stays steadfast in building an honest business, and how we can all learn from one another through the power of storytelling.
Insights From The Episode
- How after a life-changing accident, Matthew’s journey through rehabilitation lead him to discover the benefits of CBD as part of a holistic wellness lifestyle.
- What drove Matthew to start his own CBD company.
- Why “Flock Extra Drops” are their most popular product.
- Why Matthew takes issue with synthetic medication due to their negative health outcomes, while CBD almost never has serious side effects.
- When individuals pursing their own CBD businesses stay true to themselves, find their unique niche, and put in the work, they can often expect satisfactory results.
- Why there is value in sharing one’s personal story with CBD, and how this can lead to diminishing skepticism for those unsure about CBD.
- What the near future looks like for CBD, including how CBD and Hemp will begin to touch every aspect of our economy, and how we are just in the beginning of a massive shift.
Resources & Links From The Episode
- How CBD and Cannabis is Changing the American Economy – Insight Success.
- Sublingual CBD – A Complete Guide – Spero CBD.
- What Is Holistic Medicine? – WebMD.
Connect With The Guest
- Flock Goods (website)
- Flock Goods on Facebook
- Flock Goods on Instagram
- Flock Goods on LinkedIn
- Flock Goods on Twitter
- Matthew Gagne on LinkedIn
About Flock Goods
Flock Goods specializes in CBD drops, tinctures, gummies, and salves for people who lead active lifestyles. Flock Goods CBD nutraceuticals nourish the building blocks of your body so you can become the healthiest and most complete version of yourself. Get the most out of life, from the time you wake up in the morning until you go to sleep at night. A portion of all proceeds are donated to spinal cord injury survivors.
Scott: Hey, what’s going on “CBD Guide Podcast” listeners? Scott back with you. Welcome to another awesome episode where we’re gonna be talking about all things CBD. I’m really excited about this show because I just love a powerful story and there are so many great stories in terms of people getting into the CBD industry and how CBD has helped them but this one really kinda hit me. And my guest, his name Matthew Gagne and he is the founder of a company called Flock Goods. And it’s a really incredible story so I won’t even…I don’t wanna steal any of his thunder. Matt, welcome to the show.
Matthew: Scott, thank you for having me. Really appreciate you taking the time.
Scott: Absolutely. Appreciate you being here. How’s your Friday going? We’re recording this on a Friday. It’s almost the weekend. How’s yours been?
Matthew: Fri-yay. Yeah, we’re ready.
Scott: Exactly. Exactly. I’m getting ready to go on a week-long vacation to the beach so I’m really stoked myself. Well, I guess let’s just kick it off. How did you first discover CBD and realize it could offer so many potential benefits for people and ultimately start Flock Goods? What’s the story?
Matthew: Oh, man, how much time do we have?
Matthew: It’s a…it really just organically came to fruition through my journey through rehabilitation. I was on a totally different trajectory. I was a pro flyer, skydiver living and working in Dubai. I was actually a few days away from leaving Dubai and I was in a car accident. I was a passenger. Broke my neck really bad at 10 places, internally decapitated. I have stretch marks on my spinal cord to this day. So, in the Middle East though they have totally different use and understanding, and perspective when it comes to pharmaceutical narcotics. So, I actually never even got morphine and I say pain is the best teacher because I was forced to find and seek holistic alternatives even before CBD. So that started the journey.
I also…and this is a longwinded answer. I’m sorry because there’s so many layers. But I embarked on that journey through that rehabilitation. And fast forward from when I left Dubai ultimately two years later. I moved to San Diego, tried CBD for the first time and it was an absolute game-changer. I had severe…still that severe arthritic pain, nerve damage down both of my arms, into my hands. I have a cervical cage in my spine that will never come out. So, I needed an option and I didn’t wanna take pain pills. Side note, I haven’t even taken ibuprofen in five years. So, I wholeheartedly believe in holistic alternatives. CBD is a huge part of that holistic regimen.
Scott: Yeah, so you have this, you know, this terrible accident and fortunately you, you know, survive but you have this sort of long-term pain and things like that and CBD has been such a big piece of your wellness routine that’s really helped you with that holistic approach. How do you make the transition to, “Okay. I’ve discovered CBD. It’s helping me. Now I actually want to start a business and reach other people with CBD.”
Matthew: Well, I found that when I was in San Diego it was difficult to find a product that I could get consistently. I mean, you can find CBD in a gas station but it’s not going…it wasn’t necessarily what I was looking for and then finding a steady source…so through that, I kinda found my own supply chain and really, you know, I was looking to find a new purpose as well. Like, skydiving was everything to me. I was a professional athlete and then that was kinda taken away from me by the actions of another person. I was a passenger in this car accident. So, it was either…I made my mind up when I woke up from surgery. I made a very conscious decision. I said to myself I will not be a victim and I will persevere over this. So, I needed to fill that void with something that I truly believed in, and embarking on this journey and knowing what I did for me, that’s when I started to actually seriously, like, look at the industry and see where things were going and I wanted to be a part of that emerging industry. And it’s been a massive learning process since day one. I mean, I incorporated Flock Goods in 2018 officially but before that even, I mean, we were sourcing and formulating and just kinda figuring out how we wanted to approach this.
The biggest thing was quality of supply chain and knowing where the goods were coming from, who was processing them. I mean, everything that I have that I sell, I consume myself and give to my mother. So, I really feel strongly about that and unfortunately, this being an emerging industry with…now it’s very regulated. Things are…the dust is settling. But in the early days, there was a lot going on that…and still to this day people selling products that just…with no medicinal value or even worse, have toxins or impurities that can cause health issues. And yeah, I didn’t agree with that. So that’s a big part of, like, why I wanted to take charge. Like, the way I took charge of my own life and my own recovery and help be a guiding light in this industry.
Scott: I mean, that’s so powerful, Matt. And people like yourself I think are so critical to the continued success of the industry itself and the continued…what I see as enlightenment of consumers in general around the potential and the power of CBD because if you’re doing it right, if you’re sourcing it right, you’re making sure that your products are quality and not just, “Hey, we threw a bunch of stuff together.” That’s really important. And, you know, and I just…I wanna say too that that “I will not be a victim” attitude is just so, so inspiring because it can be so easy to just sort of fold up shop if something like that happens but you didn’t and that’s great.
So, I’m curious what are some of your most popular products currently, and what do your customers say about them?
Matthew: So, they say Flock all day, Flock all night. Really, I’d say our…it’s tough. It’s a really close race. All of the products are made with cannabinoid-rich hemp extracts so they’re all high quality. It just depends on what form. I always push people to gravitate towards the sublingual tinctures first because you’re getting direct sublingual absorption through oral ingestion and to me that’s the most effective and then I’d back that up with capsules and topicals. So yeah, the day and night are really great and probably the Flock Extra strength because the price point for…I wanted to be able to provide something like a good bang for your buck. And I’m a little guy. I’m in this as, you know, somebody who, like, bootstrapped and still am, you know, wearing many hats, right, and I’m competing with big competitors that are spending millions of dollars to buy market share every quarter and…but I’m partnered with a GMP certified facility so my products are the highest quality that you can source in the U.S. And because we’re a small operation, we’re able to provide and pass the value and pass the savings down to the consumers. So, I’d say the Flock Extra drops. That’s a long-winded answer to say the Flock Extra drops are probably the number one seller right now.
Scott: The Flock Extra drops, yeah. And I’m curious. You know, you mentioned you have your…you know, the day and the night formulation. When you were dealing with your pain, I can imagine that…and please correct me if I’m wrong. There were some sleepless nights or some rough times even falling asleep if you’re having pain like that, right?
Matthew: Oh, my gosh. I mean, when I was wearing a halo…anybody who’s worn a halo, you know, it’s basically a portable jail cell and it’s bolted into your skull and you’re sleeping on two prongs whether you’re on your back or your side. It’s not very comfortable. And when you get out of that contraption, it’s very difficult to move. I mean, if anybody’s had a cast, you see how skinny your arm gets when you break an arm. Imagine your neck. So, there was…it was a real serious situation that I needed a serious solution. And, like, I attacked the problem…I attacked my trauma from all angles. I mean, it’s the physical, the mental, nutritional, your recovery and I balanced all that into an active lifestyle and I still pursue that.
So, I’m just constantly keeping my cannabinoid receptors saturated with our products because it’s what helps me actually manage and mitigate the pain long-term. If I was taking pain pills or ibuprofen or any of those synthetic things daily, I would have a terrible gut biome. My liver and kidney enzymes would be not in a healthy performing optimal level. Like, there’s just so many negative health aspects to those types of medications long-term whereas this is a holistic option that has very little side-effect at all. Personally, I don’t feel any side effects. And it actually helps. It helps significantly. If I don’t have CBD, the nerve damage and arthritic pain in my arms are almost unbearable and I can really just not move the way I have the potential to. It’s just…really, it’s kinda the oil in my joints, if you will.
Scott: I mean, it’s so powerful, and yeah. In terms of, like, side effects or really, you know, just a lot of the negative outcomes that a lot of people have experienced from, you know, other methods you just… Time and time again I talk to people like yourself and they say, “Yep. CBD, I am not experiencing any of that, and that works so much better for me.” Matt, you were talking earlier about how, you know, you bootstrapped Flock Goods. You’re one of the little guys in an industry with a lot of big players who have, you know, tons and tons of muscle to buy market share. I know there’s folks out there that maybe they’re really passionate about CBD. They’re starting their own businesses. They wanna do it right. They wanna meet customers and grow and all of this. How…what have been some of your keys to really breaking through all of that noise and reaching people with your products and with your story?
Matthew: I think just staying in my lane, my niche, active lifestyle, enthusiast. I speak out of my heart and I speak from my heart because those…I want to affect people in a real way. So yeah. I would recommend anyone looking to get into the industry and start-up something, an operation for themselves that…stay true to yourself. Try not to spread yourself too thin and find your niche and just triple down. Really what’s gotten me through the tough times is just stubborn determination and the will to just persevere. No thinking macro and acting in the micro. Daily, just taking all the steps that I can and controlling my environment. I try to…personally, I just try to tune out a lot of the noise. Obviously, you have to be in it and stay relevant and up to date on current events but trying to fight the noise as much as possible and focused extreme attention in building…on organizing and building an ecosystem for not only myself but for my team to thrive. I try to empower everyone to do what they enjoy and what they’re good at and then, you know, triple down on that and try to do less of everything else, and eventually, you’ll get to a place where you are bigger and stronger and you have more power.
So yeah. And that’s I think…when you get to that point, you’re able to affect real change in a positive way. We have a giving back program. I was just on the phone before we got on the podcast with one…our very first spinal cord injury survivor recipient of Flock Goods. I give a portion of proceeds to…of all sales to…directly to spinal cord injury survivors. Obviously, that’s dear to my heart and I’ve given a lot over the years and I plan to give a lot more and even open up the program to others that are…there’s so many worthy recipients.
So yeah. That’s…in a nutshell, I think stay true to your heart, speak your truth, and only put out products that you would consume yourself or give to your mother because that’s the given. I think number one is the quality and what you’re selling should be exactly what you say it is.
Matthew: You should be doing the due diligence to ensure so.
Scott: I mean, that’s…Matt, it’s so powerful. I’m sitting here just kinda floored because it’s…I think it’s true there’s this objective truth in life that what you put into the world, you do get back. And if you are, you know, just pushing forward in such a positive way and you’re saying, “I wanna lead with quality. I wanna lead by example. I want to, you know, elevate my team and help them, you know, achieve their goals and I wanna do all that.” Then the success will come if you continue to…I always like to use this phrase, chopping wood. If you just keep showing up and doing that and being yourself, it comes back to you.
Matthew: Yeah. Yeah, and you gotta put in the work. No ones gonna outwork me. I mean, I’m just…in a positive way, though. I think it’s important to triple down on what you like and what you’re good at and if you’re gonna do something, do it well, take pride in it, work hard, and then don’t quit. I’ll steal a line from David Goggins.
Scott: Yeah, do it, do it.
Matthew: But that’s…I think he scared some people so we wanna do this…we wanna encourage people to take charge in the same way but we wanna encourage you to kick your own while you’re laughing.
Scott: Right. Right.
Matthew: While you’re laughing at yourself.
Scott: I’m curious if you’ve sort of come across…maybe you’ve run into someone who’s newer to CBD or they’re, like, unsure or, like, skeptical…if you’re kind of sharing your story and they’re like, “Really, though? Was CBD that, you know…what else were you doing?” What might you say to them if you run into some skepticism about CBD to encourage them? Hey, give it a try. Give it a chance. Here’s my story. Here’s these other stories. What might you say to really maybe have them take the plunge, so to speak?
Matthew: I think that suspicion is valid, honestly. I myself had my doubts but I’d say once you try it, see for yourself. I mean, CBD’s something that traditionally was in the past within our nutritional diet naturally but we don’t get those…that exposure in our diets normally to cannabinoids. We have cannabinoid receptors within our body so our bodies respond really well to the plants. And anyone who has doubts, it’s probably because they had an interaction with a snake oil salesman and maybe were promised the world, like, overpromised and underdelivered. CBD’s a holistic aspect and alternative.
I was the one that has a cervical cage and I haven’t even taken ibuprofen. But it’s not just the CBD. Like, I exercise and continue doing physical fitness daily. I do intermittent fasting to help reduce inflammation. I eliminate sugar. So, there’s a lot of things you could do. Massages, stretching, hydration. So, there’s…if you think you’re gonna take CBD and then eat a bucket of fried chicken and that CBD is gonna offset all that inflammation from the fried food and oil, then you’re crazy and that’s the sort of mentality that has got us to where we are in a society where we think you take a pill and it’s gonna fix you. That is never the case. I’m not against pharmaceuticals. They’re absolutely necessary in many situations. Our medical…like, it’s…I’m not a medical professional but I understand CBD. To me, as a nutraceutical food-based supplement that has medicinal value, there’s plenty of case studies with people a lot smarter than myself studying the plant that [inaudible 00:16:41] direct correlations to positive benefits and situations that are beyond me but I know what the plant has done for me. And I know what it does for my customers. They tell me so. And everyone who’s…pretty much everybody who’s purchased our goods purchases them again and again and again. I’m biased.
Scott: But it speaks for itself. It speaks for itself when you say that, yeah.
Matthew: It speaks for itself. And I literally named my company Flock because it means community and movement and I think that’s what it takes. Like, I say together we’re strong as flock and I share my story only as the spark to encourage others to share their story. It’s not about my story. It’s about yours, to the listener.
Scott: Yeah, 100%. Yeah.
Matthew: And that’s the thing. Like, I’ve learned through severe significant trauma and I was in a foreign country. I dealt with it in a large way myself. Thankfully, I had a great group of friends and people in my life that came to my aid and helped me when I needed it the most but I also helped myself massively by taking…I’ll steal another line from Jocko, Jocko Willings…Wilkins. I took extreme ownership. And this is long before he articulated it that way. I kinda did that organically out of…naturally out of…it was either fight, flight, or fight. So, I fought. I’m a fighter. And I was gonna be a champion regardless in life. Whether or not I was gonna be a skydiving champion anymore, I was gonna be a champion in life and be someone who effects positive change in the world. That’s all I want. And we’re doing that through nutraceuticals but it’s…I always say, like, Flock is a lifestyle enhancement brand. We’re based around nutraceuticals. We specialize in CBD. But I just see so much potential in holistic alternatives that I can’t quit now. We’ve gotten this far.
Scott: Yeah, definitely don’t because you are absolutely crushing it. One thing you said that I think is so important how, you know, some people are looking for that sort of miracle solution and, you know, CBD is part of the whole and I think that’s so important. It’s…there are no silver bullets. It’s not like, “Well, I just took this one CBD capsule, and now all my other aches and pains are completely gone and I don’t have to do anything else with my life.” That’s just not accurate. And I think it’s so great that you really highlight that and you’ve kind of built your brand around, you know, saying, “Hey, we’ve got these great products that can help you but it’s so much more. It’s this lifestyle, right?”
Matthew: It is. I mean, we jokingly call it the Flock life. And it’s just…and then we all flock different, right. How do you flock? I mean, that’s what we…we wanna encourage others to share their stories, their experiences and feel empowered doing so because we’re all on our individual pursuits of self-mastery. If you noticed the logo, the hummingbird, ironically, the hummingbird is the only bird that flocks alone but it’s about flocking individually but flocking together. Especially in our world. We’re so disconnected nowadays. In our world, we’re so disconnected. We’re so connected but we’re so disconnected at the same time. So, this is my hail Mary effort to help bring people together in the ways that they can connect on a human level. I’m writing an eBook called the “Five Finger Framework to Get Flocked” and it entails the five fingers that I mentioned. Physical fitness, mental health, nutrition, recovery, and lifestyle. CBD falls in that nutritional category but there’s all these other aspects too and it’s about taking ownership and taking massive responsibility.
There’s a great quote that really resonates with me that…fault is in the past. Responsibility is in the future. And I want everyone to know that and if you haven’t really thought about that, think about it now because it’s so important to where you’re gonna be five years from now. Like, your actions today directly affect where you’ll be in the future. So, I remind myself that every day because I know firsthand how finite life is and can be and how it could be over in a moment’s notice. I was lucky enough to get a second chance so I told myself I’m not gonna waste it.
Scott: I am straight up writing that quote down. That is fantastic. Yeah. I mean, that…wow. That’s really, really impactful. As we look to the future, I guess…because you’re talking about the future here and it’s all about what’s next, right. What do you see in the future for CBD as a whole and how might the landscape around CBD change in the months and years to come?
Matthew: I think CBD will…and hemp as a whole will touch every aspect of our economy. I think that this is just a beginning of a massive revelation and shift in understanding towards the plant and its uses. Ingestibles are one of many uses for the plant. So, we’re excited about the future in all the other industries as well that the plant will touch and the jobs it will create, and how it will affect our environment in a positive way. There’s a lot of potential there so we’re excited about that.
Scott: What’s next for Flock Goods specifically? Do you guys have any projects or new products or any happenings going on that you can share that our listeners might find to be really interesting?
Matthew: So, we have officially moved to Maine, kind of known AKA the Northern California of New England. So, we started our roots in San Diego and we flocked all the way here to the East Coast and now we are also providing access to cannabis products in the state of Maine. And we’re really excited about transitioning more and more and more into ecologically sustainable practices with our farming here. So, a lot is in the works. I can’t share all the details yet but just know that we are aggressively pursuing full vertical integration in our supply chain from seed to sale in the state of Maine.
Scott: That’s…I mean, that’s fantastic. And I know I’m excited to see where you guys can take it all. If folks want to learn more, maybe they wanna try some of your products, see what you have going on, where can they do that? Where should they go?
Matthew: Yeah, please do flock to flockgoods.com, and actually I created a promo code for your listeners. Empowered by Flock will give listeners 15% off and free shipping for any goods that they choose to order.
Scott: Awesome. And we’ll list that on the show notes as well. Matt, thank you so much for joining me on the show today, for really sharing your story, your journey, and where you’re going next. I think it’s so inspiring and the industry is made only stronger with folks like yourself doing things the right way. So, appreciate you taking the time.
Matthew: Thank you, Scott. I appreciate you taking the time and giving us a platform to share. And I implore all your listeners to share their stories as well. So, flock yeah.
Scott: Thanks, Matt.