Coconut palms grow throughout the equatorial belt of our planet, however there is only a small number of countries that actually export virgin coconut oil to the United States.
Historically Philippines has been the forerunner in production and research of the coconut palm. The government has historically invested heavily in developing products from the "tree of life". This seemed like a loosing battle as the Philippine government had been pumping money into this seeming undervalued and underappreciated commodity up until about 2012 when the temperate regions of the world began taking notice of the many benefits of coconut oil and coconut products in general.
As the wave of coconut excitement got underway, other equatorial governments with lots of coconut trees and cheap labor saw a way to increase exports through the production of virgin coconut oil.
First real competitor was Sri Lanka, which flooded the market with cheap virgin coconut oil, however quality standards were quite low at that time followed by a prolong drought. Next came Vietnam which can struggle as they don't have the volumes of coconuts needed for large scale production. You also have India which has been desperately trying to gain a foothold in the market, but has notoriously been known to produce low quality oil and seem to have many unscrupulous manufacturers.
And finally you have the quality coconut oil producers which focus on high quality raw coconut oil.
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