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Why some coconut water fans are losing it

harmless harvest coconut water scarcity Junkies for Harmless Harvest, one of just a few brands bottling raw, organic coconut water, have spent the last month or so jonesing for a hydrating fix.

The company’s been fielding urgent appeals from needy fans on their Facebook page for weeks, like: “When will product be back in MD/DC area? None of my 4 stores have it the last month! Help!!!”

The beloved brand has gone missing from coolers across the country because wildly increased demand has created supply issues at the source in Thailand, says the company. And rather than farm out business to any random coconut producer, the company’s been “…investing in the source and developing long term relationships,” says Harmless Harvest co-founder Justin Guilbert.

“While this meant we would encounter inventory bumps in the heart of the summer,” he explains, “it also means we now have an uncompromising operation in Thailand which allows for more capacity but also transparency, traceability, and community involvement.”

He’s grateful to customers for hanging in there. “Not just any raw coconut makes good water and there is a seemingly endless amount of parameters that are required to achieve the product they enjoy,” he admits.

Though fans may be glad for the company’s integrity, it doesn’t help a parched yoga body on a hot day.

According to Guilbert, the nutty elixir in cute hand-drawn plastic bottles should be back in a fancy bodega near you very soon. “We’re at 100% today in most parts of the country,” says Guilbert. And “in full delivery across the New York metro area.”

However, it may take a little while till you actually see it. “Return to full inventory comes in fit and starts,” he admits.

New York fans will be waiting with bated, thirsty breath, and maybe even while sipping on one of those less pricey brands that seemed just fine before Harmless Harvest came along.  —Valerie Reiss

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