Family Crafting Origins

SoloCoco was founded by Daniel Dalet, his wife Gaby Dalet and his cousin Abel Gonzalez (pictured left) in 2015 in the Dominican Republic.  After over a decade in the financial industry, the young crew decided it was time to start an agro-industrial production company that could improve the lives of all involved in the production chain.

The average citizen of the DR lives at or below the poverty line, with little education or technical training so the guys wanted their company to be a shelter for the average Dominican worker, where only willingness to learn and hard work was required.

For all of 2012, Daniel had been working on a pilot program in the small town of Miches, on the north coast of the island and home to some of the most pristine farms and coasts.

During this time, Daniel tried virtually every production method for producing Virgin Coconut Oil; expeller pressing, fermentation, and centrifuged. None of these processes had every element of what he was looking for. He was not satisfied with the quality of fermented coconut oil. Expeller pressing was not the vision he had and the taste was slightly too harsh to be enjoyed by all taste buds. The yields from a centrifuge were too low to be practical.

The DME Process Is Tested

As if sent from above, the Direct Micro Expeller process landed in Daniel’s sight. After some initial conversations with the inventor of the process and founder of Kokonut Pacific, Dr. Dan Etherington, Daniel ordered some pilot materials for testing the DME process and the final pilot was developed.

The DME process seemed to fit with every aspect of what they had been searching for: a craft that could be learned by those who were willing. It also happened to be almost completely energy self sustainable. All that was left was to build up the final pilot, test the process and the resulting product.

It took some time to learn how to hand dry the meal over the sustainable biomass dryers. After a few humps to get over, the product finally came out of the hand operated press. It was something else! As the press lever came down and the beautiful, water-like oil came out, excitement grew for the future.

The taste of the oil fresh from the press was clearly what they had been searching for. Daniel’s description of that first taste of the oil:

“The oil tasted like it was still in the coconut. So fresh, very mild and extremely clean. I was sold on the process immediately.”

Once the process had been selected, Daniel and Abel worked relentlessly to bring their oil to the US market. They succeed in bringing a truly local, made in the Caribbean-not-Asia, fair trade, extremely low carbon footprint, farm-to-jar Virgin Coconut Oil to the US market. There was no other oil like this in the US, and other than SoloCoco, there still isn’t.

Solococo Is Born

After more than a year in development, the guys pooled all of their savings and rented an abandoned warehouse in San Pedro de Macoris, DR and SoloCoco was founded. San Pedro de Macoris is near one of the major ports of export and only a short drive away from Miches. The guys spent months on a real fixer upper but ended up pleased with the results (below).

After months of workflow design and construction, the facility was finally ready to receive those that were willing to work. There were many, in fact, waiting for the company to open its doors for workers.

Enrique Dalet, Daniel’s father, was brought in to run the administrative side of the company. Dr. Gonzalez, Abel’s father, was also brought in as a member of the team and board of directors.

Training Our Troops

The company’s training program took about 6 months and included visits from Kokonut Pacific founders, Dan and Maureen Etherington (pictured left).  It was a long and arduous process, particularly for our dryer operators, to reach the necessary skill level in hand drying the meal.  In fact, the drying process is more of an art than a technical skill. It requires much attention to detail and practice.

During their visit, Dr. Dan and Maureen shared many insights from their own decades of experience in producing DME VCO of the finest quality in the Solomon Islands.

For Dan and Abel, it was an invaluable moment in the development process.  After many months of tough training, our workers turned into specialists and were ready for their uniforms.  The company’s specialists are all fair trade workers and they earn 30% above the minimum wage.  Of course there are always outliers in any process, and these became floor supervisors at our company.

Choose The Right Coconut Oil

A simple guide about how to recognize the essential characteristics of a good quality Virgin Coconut Oil.

Meet Our Team

We are just a few but together we make the best team ever. We dedicate our lives to see the communities we impact grow.

Meet Our Artisans

Every worker of our company is important to us and their stories are our inspiration and drive. Here they are.

Get Us In Your Store

If you want to see our products on the shelf of your favorite grocery chain, we make it easy for you.  Remember, stores will stock what is asked of them!  All you need to do is write them, below are the contact emails for major grocery chains in Florida (we run our distribution in FL but you can order online from any state direct from us!). To make it easier for you, you could copy and paste the text below:

Dear XXXX

This is just a quick note to let you know that I frequent your grocery store in XXXXXXX.  I would love to see this product www.solococo.com on your shelf and would certainly buy it if it was there.  The company is a small, farm to jar producer of high quality Virgin Coconut Oil, the only one in the Americas.  It is Fair Trade, Usda Organic, Non Gmo and HACCP certified.  I would love to see it on your shelves!

Kindly,

XXXXXX

The Fresh Market

Ask them to stock SoloCoco!​

Whole Foods

Ask them to stock SoloCoco!​

Winn Dixie

Ask them to stock SoloCoco!​