Photos & words by Tony Ottomanelli II
Ever tried or heard of Papa Murph’s Premium E-Liquid? Held in unicorn style bottles, Papa Murph’s has certainly become a favorite for many vapers residing in the state in which it has derived, Colorado.
Brendan Murphy previously worked construction, and if it were not for vaping, he would still be working those long hours of exhausting work, a job that certainly takes its toll on anyone’s physical condition.
However, all because of the technological breakthrough of nicotine delivery by vaping e-liquid, Murphy now has a successful premium e-liquid brand. The line gave his career a true purpose, something that provides for his wife and three children, something he can call his own.
Of course, like most vapers, Murphy is a former smoker who found vaping as his answer to quitting smoking. After a while, he was so fascinated with the effectiveness of vaping, he quickly transformed himself into an advanced vaper, learning more and more about the hobbyist side of the vaping culture. He quickly became curious about how e-liquid was manufactured and processed. So, Murphy watched a DIY video and began experimenting.
‘Murphy said the shop, VapeWize, established in the Denver area with two locations, is basically responsible for ultimately assisting in what changed everything for him. A lot of other vape shops would initially sample his e-liquid and for whatever reason, eventually just pass on it. Yet, for Murphy, VapeWize was the main shop who was seriously the first to tell him their honest opinion about the juice he was making. They told him he might have something special happening with his product.
That’s when Papa Murph’s was born. VapeWize was one of the first shops to carry his juice line. Murphy is extremely grateful for the relationship he has developed with the proprietor’s of VapeWize, Shaune and Sarah Walter.
He also spoke very highly of his distributor, Underdog Vape Distribution. He refers to them as family. Scotty and Ben from Underdog Distribution are not similar to any ordinary distributor, they are more focused on developing close positive relationships with their clientele. According to Murphy, amongst them, “it is essentially family-based. We’re in this together. We are like a family. At least that’s exactly how it feels for me.”.
The vapor industry is amazing in every way to Murph. It has truly turned his life around and given him opportunities he may not have been able to gain prior access to otherwise. He is very much impressed by the advocacy movement that
has sprung up ahead of the looming FDA regulations.
How does he feel about the future of the industry?
“Deep down, I’m very optimistic,” he said. “ All these stats people are throwing out there about 99% of the vaping industry potentially being terminated — I just think we’ve come much too far and have dived so deep into building a culture around the industry that for anything that drastic to occur is difficult to imagine becoming a serious reality.”
Murphy highlights the message vaping sends and the symbol it stands for by mentioning the highly successful and largely admirable action of establishing beneficial agendas like the Vape-a-Vet Program — Murphy expands on this topic by asking, “When have you ever a tobacco company do anything for veterans?”
On the Vape-A-Vet program’s website, it states, “The primary focus of the project is to help Veterans “conquer” tobacco habits by providing a healthier alternative at no cost to them. Both active duty and prior service members are eligible (vapeavet.org).” There is no doubt, this is a program where the character that defines the culture of vaping is full of strength and passion.
The vaping community is certainly amazing in that way, we are here to help and that means, help for anyone who needs it.
“The business is entirely unpredictable, some days I’ll have zero orders, other days I’ll have over 20 orders to process.” Murphy said. “Not just the business, but the industry as a whole is completely unpredictable.”
He continues to clarify, “there is always some new locally-driven legislation opposition to vaping that we have to fight, whether collecting signatures for petitions, writing your state representative or the introduction of some new bill you have to support…it is continuous.”
Murphy said that is the reason activism is a necessity for all vapers.
“There is no other choice but to fight for your right to vape, we’re not just gonna give up,” he said. “We’ve all come too far, no matter if you own your own business or if you are merely a beginner to vaping. We’ve come too far, they can’t force us to go back to tobacco products after this huge impact vaping has had.”
Murphy also believes in giving back to his customers — the ones who ensure that his business can continue feeding his family. He regularly hosts events where he gives away 30-40 bottles of product as a thank you to the community.
“I’m in complete awe of how much this vaping phenomenon has had on my life. Vaping turned my life around towards a direction that is more healthy – physically, mentally, emotionally, professionally,” he said. “I own my own business, I can spend more time with my children and my wife, I can provide for them and I can help make a positive difference in the community and the vast amount of amazing people I’ve had the chance to meet — it has all been so rewarding.
“I want to build more than just a random business relationship, I want to get to know all of my customers personally.” Murphy often delivers local juice orders himself, rather than simply sending a package, he prefers to meet his customers face-to-face, greet them and thank them.
He said however, that one of the biggest hurdles in the industry is finding new and creative ways to market his products in an industry that has become quite saturated.
“It can make things slightly more difficult to build your brand,” he said.
The line consists of three flavors. First, there is Granny’s Custard which “is the indulgence of granny’s most delicious graham cracker custard with a creamy finish that will leave you wishing it was endless.”
The second flavor is Getaway, which is “packed with tropical fruits and infused in a way that is sure to leave your mind at ease like your perfect Getaway!”
The third flavor in the collection is Wake N’ Vape, “a delicious hot cup of cappuccino with nodes of smooth vanilla and a hint of caramel that are bound to wake your taste buds up.”
Each flavor comes in 0, 3 or 6mg of nicotine.
My personal opinion is that what ultimately makes Papa Murph’s stand out among many other juice-lines is the positive attitude behind the owner and founder. Murphy is by far one of the most generous, honest, down-to-earth, and professional entrepreneurs and well-rounded vaping business innovators whom I’ve met.