Coconuts, which are the fruit of a special type of palm tree found in the tropical zone, previously could be found primarily as a flavor complement in numerous beverage categories. However, the water that is stored in the middle of the fruit as the seed develops has found its own home within the beverage industry. Coconut water, not be confused with coconut milk, has seen many beverage-makers emerge on the scene touting the drink’s electrolyte content as well as its ability to aid hydration. As these brand owners continue to share the associated benefits of this category, consumers seem to be taking notice.
“Coconut water is not a fad,” says Tom Larsen, president and general manager for Zico Beverages LLC, El Segundo, Calif. He adds that the category is growing at 30 percent annually.