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>> Interview with Sondra Tatum

Interview with Sondra Tatum

Sondra Tatum

1. What are some rawfood staples in your current diet?
A current raw food staple in my diet in Thailand is a salad called "Som Tom" It is a spicy green papaya salad made with green papaya, tomato, carrots, raw peanuts, palm sugar, chili peppers. It is very good and there are variations with the salad depending on who is making it. I always order my salad special because I eat it vegetarian without MSG.

A) Are you 100% raw?
I was 100% raw for 3 years but today I guess I'm about 75 to 80%. I'm enjoying some Thai cooking prepared for me special with raw virgin coconut oil (I carry it with me everywhere I go). I refuse to eat foods prepared with vegetable oils of any kind.

B) How did you start?
I started eating totally Raw because it was easy for me since it is the way I've eaten most of my life. I do not like to cook or prepare food so I usually eat straight from tree to mouth. It is, to me the way raw was intended. I have eaten at some raw food restaurants but to me the food is overly processed with way too many combinations of ingredients especially the nuts and seeds. If I wanted to eat a hamburger I would eat one (which I do not because I am vegetarian) why would I eat something raw that was supposed to taste like a hamburger, or like anything else for that matter? I prefer no processing at all. I like fresh salads the most of all.

2. What inspired you to go to Thailand in search of organic young coconuts?
I wanted everyone to be able to afford Organic Young Thai Coconuts not just a few so I decided to move to Thailand to work with the farmers hand in hand. Find a buyer who could reach the USA coast to coast (and more) with an affordable coconut for all. I have found the buyer, New Harvest Organics and they are working on the coast to coast part.

3. What are some of the main differences between your organic Thai coconuts and the standard non organic young coconut.

There are two main differences, one is in the growing and the other is in the processing. First the coco's I send are grown without chemicals and second they are are processed without any chemical dips.

Note: If the young coconut you are consuming is white it is dipped in chemicals!!! Not just once but many times. I've seen the process myself. The workers wear protective clothing when they process the coconuts. They wear heavy aprons and heavy gloves. They use long poles with wire baskets on the end to remove the coconuts from the dips so they do not touch them.

A natural coconut husk turns brown within minutes of husking so when the conventional processing takes place the coconut is immediately dipped in their chemical(s) of choice as soon as the husk is removed, then the coconut is sent to the processing plant where it is polished or trimmed and dipped again in their chemical(s) of choice. The last dip (this makes 3 dips total) is when the coconut is ready for packing, it is dipped again then wrapped for transport. It is a sad process to watch and the workers themselves try to touch the cocos as little as possible, if at all.

I know many believe the young Thai coconuts they eat in Raw food restaurants are good for them but trust me they are not! Also a lot of their food contains the coconut water from treated coconuts. I also know many believe a certain test that was done came back pure, but it did not. I saw the test results myself and there were trace amounts of formaldehyde in that test in the fine print. If you believe trace amounts are not harmful to you that is your choice but believe me it like a girl saying she is a little bit pregnant it just cannot be that way. It is so, or it is not. All white young Thai coconuts are treated with dips of various chemicals before transport and most, if not all are grown with chemical fertilizers with hormones added for good measure. I've seen it with my own eyes.

The soft eye of the coconut is very sensitive and very soft. If a coconut is dipped the chemicals they will enter the coconut through the soft eye. No doubt about it. The soft eye is mothers natures way for the coconut to reproduce, it is where the sprout grows out from to make a new tree and it is soft enough for the sprout to exit and grow into a tree.

4. Can you explain the process how the organic coconuts are preserved and shipped.
We harvest the coconuts and husk them without any chemicals the coconuts husks turn brown within minutes during this process. Next the coconut is polished it is by now is a dark tan in color (natural). After polishing the coconut we trim the top over the eyes. The cocos are immediately refrigerated at +4 Celsius and kept cold throughout the packing process and shipped cold as well during their journey to the states.

5. What is the best way to crack open these organic young coconuts?
The best way is to locate the soft eye pierce it add a straw if you prefer and enjoy the delicious pure sweet flavor of the coconut. You can pour the water (sometimes referred to as juice) into a glass or drink the water straight from the coconut. To eat the meat (kernel) on the inside simply break the coconut shell and scoop out the meat.

6. What is the most nutritious part of the coconut?
I believe the coconut is nutritious through and through the water is refreshing and the kernel is delicious. I am not a nutritionist and cannot tell you the most nutritious part.

7. Can you share a favorite raw coconut recipe?
Since I do not process, my favorite raw food recipe is a very simple one all done to personal taste.


5-6 Organic Young Coconuts
Open soft eye and drain coconut.
Open coconut and scoop out the meat

cut meat inside into 1/2 inch squares
cut dried mango into 1/2 inch squares
about 2/3rds coconut and 1/3 dried mango

place in a glass bowl:
add the juice of 2 limes (more or less)
add 2 tablespoons turmeric (more or less)
add small amount of coconut water (more or less, you do not want this to be too wet just enough for moisture)

stir ingredients and refrigerate long enough for mango to absorb lime and water and eat when cold.
(if you can wait that long :)

8. What are some quick tips or hints for raw newbies?
take it day by day and do not rush it. I believe if you want to go raw this is the best advise I can give. If you go all the way raw without a step by step process you may feel like you are missing out on something. Also do not feel guilty if you do not eat 100% raw there are exceptions to every rule.

9. Where do you see the raw food movement heading?
I think the Raw food movement is a good one and if it gets people out of the habit of cooking everything they eat I think even better. Raw is definitely better for the body. I was eating mostly raw before I even knew there was a movement. It actually started for me as a young girl eating out of our personal garden in Kansas (where I was born). I was usually full before the meal was served and I was always thought of as a bit strange for my eating habits back then. Now there is a movement to explain my eating habits I think that is pretty cool!

10. Can you please tell us about some of your current projects you're working on and/or developing?
I am planning future projects but I am keeping them under wraps at this moment so not to ruin the surprise.

Do you have anything else to add?
Thank you for your time and remember an Organic Young Thai Coconut a day is good for the body!

Organic Young Coconuts


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