What is Virgin Coconut Oil?

The term “Virgin” is used to emphasize that, all nutrients in a nut/seed/ or fruit is preserved when it is converted to the format of oil. If we use the word “Virgin fruit juice” it means that the natural nutrients in a fruit is preserved when it is squeezed into juice. Similarly in Virgin Olive oil it means that the natural nutrients in olives are preserved when oil is pressed out.

Virgin Coconut Oil in a Jar
Virgin Raspberry Juice

For this to happen, the number one rule is the squeezing or pressing process should not generate high heat. And that is where the word “Cold-Press” comes in. Because heat takes out nutrients in a fruit or veggie. The second factor is that the fruit or nut should not be old or kept in store for weeks and months. Because “TIME” & “Aging” is also a factor that alters nutrients of a fruit. So a virgin oil or virgin fruit juice simply means a cold pressed product from a fresh fruit (or nut).

Fresh Coconuts used for Virgin Oil
Coconut flesh is spread out on the ground and sun dried for weeks to make Copra

When coconuts are sun dried for weeks (known as “Copra” after sun drying) it is no longer a suitable material for virgin coconut oil. For virgin coconut oil production only fresh coconuts should be used. When coconut oil is pressed out from sun dried coconuts (named as copra), the coconut oil cannot be called virgin coconut oil. It is called “Copra coconut oil”, “White coconut oil”, “Pure coconut oil”, conventional coconut oil” and in so many names. But the term “virgin” cannot be used, because the coconut has aged due to sun drying.

If leafy greens or veggies are cooked components like vitamins, anti-oxidants, are lost and the nutrition percentage of each nutrient is a bit altered.

Fresh vegetable salad preserves natural nutrients
Heated and Cooked vegetables lose some of its nutrients

Thus, if an oil (coconut, olive, avocado) is termed “virgin”, the original fresh fruit is “COLD-PRESSED” (Imagine squeezing out oil of a fruit or seed by hand). In the yester generation Sekkuwa Chekku was used to press oil gradually without high heat generation.

Chekku / Sekkuwa – Coconut flesh is pressed gradually by the center axel when the bull walks around
Modern Cold Press expeller rotating like a screw

So virgin coconut oil means the fruit is in RAW form and it is COLD PRESSED to preserve natural nutrients. Raw Cold Pressed is a synonym for “Virgin Coconut Oil”. In other words when we say Virgin Coconut Oil it means the coconut is raw and fresh, and the press is done in a gradual pressure application (cold procedure – no high heat generation)

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