by MAYA M. PADILLO
The low supply of coconut fruits could not cope with the growing demand of coconut water in foreign countries, an official of Franklin Baker said.
Luis Rodriguez Jr., group manager for nut buying operation of Franklin Baker said the low supply is a problem which coconut stakeholders should address.
He cited re-planting as one solution and for ageing farmers to teach their children the value of farming so they would learn to tend the farm.
Rodriguez also cited the conversion of big lands for other industries is another issue affecting the coconut industry.
“As you know real estate is growing up. Before farm lands cost about P30 per square meters now its P500 per sqm then what happens, the owners of the land will sell their land including their coconuts then migrate to the city,” Rodriguez said.
He said to save the coconut farms, farmers should be convinced there is money in coconut, a business that would lead them to prosperity.
Rodriguez said Franklin Baker is expanding their foreign market for coco water, which is being considered the game changer of the coconut industry as more and more people are getting conscious about health and a better alternative for soda because it’s natural.
“This has health benefits,” he said.
He said coco water is popular in countries like the US and Europe. These countries he said are considered the biggest consumers of coconuts since they don’t grow coconuts.