Kochi: Due to the inimitable taste and sweetness, tender coconuts from Kerala is in high demand in foreign markets. However, Kerala units have targeted other states because of the shortage of coconuts in the state. Oman, Saudi Arabia and Dubai are the countries where tender coconuts from Kerala has the highest demand.
The tender coconut from Palakkad and Attappady areas are mostly exported to foreign countries. But the availability of tender coconuts declined after the price of tender coconuts increased from Rs 20 and the producers gave more importance to raw coconut and coconut oil.
In shops, tender coconut is sold for about Rs 40. It is exported after buying tender coconut from farmers and completing different stages of processing and packing. The tender coconut exported from Kerala costs about Rs 280 in foreign markets.
Since tender coconut is less available here, the exporters depend on other states where its price is nearly Rs 20. The price is low in Tamil Nadu and Karnataka states as the production cost also is very low there. About 1500 tender coconuts per week were exported.
Though many orders keep coming from abroad, many of them are declined due to shortage of tender coconuts, said tender coconut exporter Shajahan. After the implementation of GST, many of the entrepreneurs withdrew from this sector as it causes huge loss to them.