A range of opportunities for retailers to capitalise on the growing coconut trend were showcased at a high-profile food to go trade show last week.

Several stands at the Lunch! event in London were promoting coconut water, milk, coconut-based fruit drinks and meat snacks.

They included Halo Coco which has blended coconut and fruit extracts to create fruity drinks, Coconut Bites from Ape and Coconut Chips from Nudie Snacks.

Raj Bains, of Welby Lane Post Office in Melton Mowbray, has stocked coconut water for several months. He said: “We get through one case every three or four weeks.”

Daxa Gandecha, shop assistant at Londis Queens Road Newsagents in Watford, said they were selling one case a week during the summer, however there has been a drop in sales since the weather turned colder.

Mighty Bee was showcasing its raw, and virgin, organic, unpasteurised coconut water.

Neither have additives, preservatives or added sugar. It also had coconut meat available to try – suitable for salads, soups, snacks, smoothies and desserts – and coconut jerky.

Coconut Merchant’s wide range of coconut products, included organic extra virgin coconut oil, as well as organic coconut butter, sugar, flour, syrup, water and jam.

Mark Trounce, of Spar Shop in Penarth, Vale of Glamorgan, trialled coconut water for just over a month but found it only sold well when it was on special
offer. However, he thinks coconut snacks would be a novel item to stock and would give them a go.

The show boasted more than 350 exhibiting companies showcasing a mix of food, drink, packaging, catering equipment and technology. New exhibitors this year included Nestlé Waters UK, Coconut Merchant, and Urban Fresh Foods.