Trash to cash: Jake's million-dollar coconut bowl business

From coconut milk to coconut water, our seemingly insatiable appetite for all things coconut comes at an environmental cost.

More than 9 million tons of coconut shells are produced worldwide each year, out of which only 15 per cent are used.

After harvesting the coconut flesh, environmental consultancy group Bioenergy Consulting estimates the coconut industry discards billions of shells each year, which are usually burned as waste or go to landfill.

One Aussie entrepreneur is turning trash into treasure by using discarded coconut shells to create bowls.

Starting up

Jake McKeon was on a surf holiday to Bali when he came across some carved coconut shells with paintings on them at a local market.

"At the time I had a health food business and I thought 'wow, if we just had a natural coconut shell with this craftsmanship my customers would buy them,' " McKeon says. "So I packed my suitcase full of them and brought them back to Australia and, in a six-week period, I sold out. Within about three months, the coconut bowls were selling better than my health food products, so I created a new business called Coconut Bowls." Read more

Cara Waters -Brisbane Times - 9 Apr 2018

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