Let's Go Nuts Over Cocos
Updated: Dec 5, 2020
Costa Rica is known to be the land of the coconut. From the refreshing water produced during its early stage as a pipa to the milk and oil made from the flesh of the mature coconut, the palm fruit has many uses and ways to be consumed.
Punta Lagarto: a 40 years old coconut plantation
Over the years, David – the founder of Coco Time in Punta Lagarto - has developed the production of dozens of products derived from coconut. On his property adjoining Marino Ballena National Park, located in Bahia Uvita, David and his family have planted hundreds of coconut trees. Twenty years ago, this former dentist decided to come to live on the family property in Uvita to get closer to the Ocean and surf as he pleases. He learnt everything he could about this white nut which grows in abundance in the region and eventually decided to make a business of it.
David works, with the agreement and support of local authorities, employing many local people who plant palm trees and harvest coconuts from his plantation. Planting palm trees make it possible to slow water rising which threatens more and more the Pacific Coast of Costa Rica.
All you can do out of coconut
Coconut tree is one of the most useful trees in the world, and is often referred to as the "tree of life". It provides food, fuel, cosmetics, medicine and building materials, among many other uses.
Punta Lagarto produces milk and oil from organic coconuts in a completely traditional, artisanal and sustainable way. During our “Coco Tour” that David offers to anyone interested, we tried to make our own coconut oil. It is a long and exhausting job that takes a lot of strength!
But the production does not stop with only milk and oil. During the Tour, we learned that "everything is good in coconut". The pulp gathered apart from the milk can be cooked and toasted, and thus be used for other culinary preparations. Plus, it is rich in protein.
The fiber removed from the shell can be used as a planter, as its water absorbent properties keep the soil moist. David’s property actually looks like a coconut fortress - surrounded by walls of super absorbent coconut shells that prevent flooding and swamps.
The shell can be burned to make activated charcoal, a natural medicine for all to get rid of intestinal parasites, and digestive problems.
David, along with his wife Manassah, also produce natural cosmetics like moisturizing lip balms, as well as snacks such as this delicious coconut bacon that left us speechless!
Coconut benefits for overall health
Coconut aids in promoting the overall health of a person as its white meat is loaded with nutrition; high in fiber, potassium and iron. By boosting the immune system, providing anti-inflammatory benefits due to its high antioxidant level, improving digestion and heart conditions, nourishing the skin, helping the metabolization of protein – a much more - coconut offers a wide range of therapeutic benefits to the person.
“HELPCA: right now, our business’ survival depends on it”
Before, we were almost exclusively selling our products on the markets, explains David. HELPCA therefore helped us survive during the pandemic as the platform was the only way to keep selling. It also helped us increase our customer base by delivering to places we could not access! HELPCA has been a great help and appeared when we needed it most.