It would be a challenge to enter any store, not just specialist health and beauty shops, and not encounter a plethora of coconut products.
From water to oil, flour to sugar, milk to the fruit itself, the infiltration of this mighty drupe (apparently the correct botanical term for a coconut), is immense. And, it’s not just the pure products that have captured consumer attention but as an ingredient coconut is everywhere, in shampoo, face creams, cakes, salads, drinks, chocolate. The list goes on and on.
Originally introduced to the market via health pr food shops, the purported health benefits of all things coconut have seen it catapult into mainstream.
Heralded as one of the healthiest foods on the planet, it is said that its unique combination of fatty acids can have profound positive effects on health; including fat loss, and better brain function.
Coconut oil is also said to be great for hair growth, can help moisturise your skin, can be used for teeth whitening, as well as a body scrub, and of course as the cooking oil of choice.
On social media such as Instagram the revolution of coconut has picked up huge following with many fitness bloggers and celebrities endorsing coconut products. Actress Emma Stone keeps coconut oil on hand as a natural makeup remover. As well as featuring prominently in Gwyneth Paltrow’s chef recipes, she claims her signature smile is all down to coconut oil, according to Glamour.
And it’s not just the celebrities that love it. According to IRI’s InfoScan data, Brits have forked out £14 million on coconut oil in the past year as the trend for using the ‘super’ oil has continued to gather in pace.
And, sales of coconut water have increased by 64% (52 w/e March 26 16) over the previous year and is now worth almost £60 million.
As a result of the demand, coconut oil prices have risen sharply, up 30% from January to April, reaching a four-year high according to The Grocer.
It’s clear to see that the coconut, once just a booby prize at fairgrounds, has become a superfood in so many ways. Of course, we’ve been here before with other products such as aloe vera, pomegranates and goji berries to name but a few, but none have perhaps quite taken off like the coconut.
It will be interesting to see in ten years, if coconut remains so prevalent.
It makes you wonder what botanists and food scientists will discover in the months to come. I’ve just discovered cactus water which is made from a prickly pear – will that be next?
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