Virgin coconut oil is derived from the fresh and mature kernel (flesh) of the coconut. The coconut must be at the right ripeness (partially or completely brown) and free from metals, dirt and other foreign material before it is processed.
The oil should be colourless, sediment free, with natural fresh coconut scent and free from rancid odours or tastes. It cannot undergo chemical refining, bleaching or de-odorising processes. Good quality virgin coconut oil should taste and smell like coconut and should easily melt.
Buyers will look at two main factors to determine the quality of your product: 1) moisture content, which should not exceed 0.5%; 2) lauric acid content, which should range between 45 and 50%.
The oil is ideally produced within 48 hours after harvesting in order to safeguard freshness. Quality is highest if the oil is extracted from the first pressing of the coconut. Virgin coconut oil can also be centrifuged at 8,000 rpm to separate the oil from any left-over solids and to increase the quality of your product.
Storage is also crucial to keep high quality. Virgin coconut oil should be stored at room temperature and protected from light.