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Dr Goerg: All Things Coconut
Dr Goerg manufactures a comprehensive range of premium coconut products and their KLBD Kosher certified product range has something for everyone. This includes food and drink products such as Premium Raw Organic Virgin Coconut Milk and Coconut flour, as well as beauty products like Premier Raw Organic Virgin Coconut Oil and Coconut Oil for animals.
Coconut oil is not only found in the kitchen, but is increasingly hailed as a shining light of the beauty industry and renowned for its health benefits. Long gone is the niche coconut market. Today coconut water and coconut oil have both seen rising popularity and familiarity. Recently, there has been a steep rise in the number of coconut products and is reflected in significant growth of the market.
Dr Goerg’s unique processing approach ensures optimum freshness and the highest quality products. The coconuts are grown in special bio plantations, with the cooperation of small farmers in the Philippines. As Javier Rees, export manager at Dr Goerg, explained “All Dr Goerg Premium Coconut products are processed gently by hand, within 72 hours of being freshly harvested. Our delicately aromatic Premium Organic Coconut Oil is released in the first cold press at 38 °C pressing temperature from sun-ripened coconuts that are harvested fresh every day. All of our products are freshly harvested, natural, not bleached and are part of our ‘Fair Trade for Fair Life’ project.”
Dr Goerg places great emphasis on quality and applies regular controls from independent food labs, as well as numerous certifications (including KLBD kosher) to confirm the high quality of their products. Javier highlighted the importance of the kosher certification for the business, “it plays a key role in reinforcing the Dr Goerg brand as a premium and credible brand for its consumers. We aim to reach out to as many consumers as possible by providing them with a quality assurance guarantee and the KLBD accreditation does exactly this.”
Year on year there have been increases in the percentage of food and beverages launched globally that contain coconut oil. In 2014, 35% of global food and beverages that were launched contained coconut oil. Moreover, the use of coconut oil in food and beverages saw growth of 15% between 2008 and 2012, and, more remarkably, the exclusive use of coconut oil which soared by 780% from 2008 to 2012. These products now account for hundreds of millions of dollars in global sales annually and, furthermore, the market for coconut oil has continued to double in each of the last three years.
Whilst the majority of growth in coconut products has occurred in North America, “the Southern Europe market has experienced the most change as olive oil plays such a strong role in everyday diets” says Javier. However, since neither region produces coconut, they are fully reliant on imports. Consequently, there is growing competition resulting in pressure for manufacturers to meet stringent health and safety food regulations, as well as to acquire additional certifications such as Fair Trade, organic, kosher and sustainability.
Experts agree that coconut products are here to stay. Javier Rees concurs, and comments, “I expect this trend to continue increasing in the coming years thanks to the interest amongst consumers to improve their diets using alternative food sources.” Coconut products have become part of a lifestyle choice, as opposed to a fad, and “coconut oil is gradually becoming another everyday source of oil,” says Javier. In the kitchen, many people have replaced traditional oils, such as olive and sunflower, with coconut oil as they perceive it as a good fat, whilst others use it for shiny hair and smooth skin, or even to groom their pets’ fur and protect from ticks in the process. Javier told KLBD that it is not only coconut oil that has seen increasing popularity, “coconut sugar and coconut flour are also becoming more and more known.” With coconut here to stay Dr Goerg takes new product development “very seriously” and advised “expect some new product launches in the coming years!”
Dr Goerg does not only focus on profit, but also place great importance on people and the planet too. Javier: “We support people in places that otherwise don’t receive any help. We also get involved in various aid projects that really do ‘make the world a better place.’ Projects that deliver direct local assistance, person to person, and also help people to help themselves. We are in the Philippines for several weeks ever year and in close contact with the people who live there, so we have vast insights into the Philippine mentality and culture. We know on the basis of own experience where help is really needed.” Some of the company profits are used to fund volunteer projects, including free dental treatments for Filipino patients, higher education for local children and Christmas presents for local children and Dr Goerg also guarantees sustainable cultivation of the coconut trees themselves.
As well as giving back to the local community Dr Goerg guarantee a friendly work environment and fair wages. Javier continued, “to ensure that it (the aid) arrives without any detours to the people who need it, we have deliberately opted not to obtain expensive German Fair Trade certifications. Instead, our assistance goes straight to the people who need it in an uncomplicated, un-bureaucratic and extremely efficient way. We don’t buy Fair Trade, we live Fair Trade!”
According to Javier Dr Goerg has “grown considerably” since establishment 11 years ago, “when the market for organic coconut products was relatively new and unknown,” it is now “one of the most important manufacturers of organic coconut based products.”
At present, Dr Goerg exports its products to manufacturers around the world including Europe and the Middle East. Javier explained that Dr Goerg “are always looking to further expand our presence and hope to enter the Latin America and Asia markets soon.” This April, the German-Filipino company exhibited alongside KLBD at the Natural Food Show, Stand S25.