Why Buying Costco Coconut Oil is Risky Business

by Sarah TheHealthyHomeEconomist June 21, 2013

costco

The popularity of coconut oil has skyrocketed in recent years. It seems as though everyone is starting to realize what traditional South Pacific cultures with virtually no heart disease knew for centuries:  coconut oil is one of the healthiest fats on the planet and is a boon to health when plentiful amounts are present in the diet.

Even Dr. Oz recommends coconut oil. When a TV medical doctor is extolling the virtues of coconut oil, you know it has well and truly gone mainstream!

The problem is that good quality virgin coconut oil is not particularly inexpensive. And with more and more budget conscious families demanding coconut oil, the big box wholesalers like Costco have been faced with a dilemma – how best to capitalize on the coconut oil frenzy while keeping the price dirt cheap.

I’ll admit that I’ve been suspicious of the big box wholesaler brands of coconut oil for quite awhile. The price just didn’t jive with the price I knew to be necessary to ensure a quality, pure product.

It seems that evidence is now emerging that my suspicions have been justified.

costco coconut oilMary M. messaged me on my Facebook page just yesterday complaining about the big jar of Costco coconut oil (picture right).  She writes:

“I just opened and began using a big container of coconut oil (got it at Costco) that I’ve had for maybe 3 months and it has sat on my pantry shelf (outside in my garage, I live in Texas so it’s gotten hotter than 100 degrees).

It smells like burned marshmallows, or maybe the inside of a pumpkin on Halloween. Since I can’t find any web sites that describe the smell (other than “yucky” and “very, very bad”) for rancid coconut oil, could you please help me out? I can’t stand to put it on my face….but can I still cook with it?”

Absolutely not.

You don’t want to ever use, cook with, or put on your skin an oil that smells bad!

Mary’s email raised two big red flags to me. First of all, I’ve been using coconut oil and virgin coconut oil for many years and I have never had it go off, even when kept for a year or two in my garage where the temperature easily reaches a 110-120F on humid August afternoons.

Coconut oil is an extremely stable oil and should never have gone bad such as what Mary M. experienced, provided it is pure, 100% coconut oil and it was filtered properly so that none of the coconut protein was left in the oil.

The second red flag about this Costco coconut oil was the wording of the label.  There is no such thing as “extra virgin coconut oil”.  It is either refined coconut oil or virgin coconut oil. A friend of mine who is the owner of a company that is a quality purveyor of virgin coconut oil had this to say:

“… any product that uses the term ‘extra virgin’ and it does not pertain to olive oil is using the term outside its definition… Trying to market something that does not exist.”

Does this mean use of the misleading term “extra virgin coconut oil” indicates an inferior product?  Not necessarily.  It is simply a red flag that further investigation to ensure a quality product is required particularly if the product is found on a shelf at Costco or other large retailer for a price that is too good to be true.

Why Inexpensive Costco Coconut Oil is Likely of Poor Quality

There are a couple of potential reasons why Mary M’s coconut oil went bad.

First of all, the Costco coconut oil might not have been 100% pure coconut oil at all.

Not pure coconut oil? Not so far fetched. This is what the olive oil industry has been doing for years, blending in cheap polyunsaturated oils with the extra virgin olive oil and marketing it as pure extra virgin olive oil.  Since the majority of the oil is indeed “pure” extra virgin, they get away with labeling it as such even though other cheap oils are present.

If Mary M’s coconut oil had vegetable oils blended in, even if organic and in small amounts, it would go bad sitting in a hot pantry for a few months causing the entire jar to stink after awhile.

Another possibility is that the oil was improperly filtered and is inferior quality coconut oil subject to rancidity as a result.  My friend mentioned earlier who is the owner of a company that sells quality virgin coconut oil had this to say when I asked him about Mary’s coconut oil problem and how it could possibly go rancid:

“The only thing I have seen is during the filtering process.  If they run it too fast or do not change the filters, one can get pieces of coconut (protein) in the product.  You will not see it other than with time you might see a slight change in color on the bottom of the container.  And this product can culture at the bottom of the container and it will have a culture smell.”

Another friend who also owns a company that sells high quality virgin coconut oil had this to add:

“It is possible that it was not 100% Coconut Oil.  However, I suspect that it was just very old oil and not fresh.  Since there is so much demand for Coconut Oil, fresh lots will be sold for money and may not be available at discount stores.”

Was Mary’s coconut oil cut with a small percentage of cheaper oils to boost manufacturer and/or coconut oil reseller profits, poorly filtered causing the coconut protein bits to “culture” the oil, or just old, manufacturer’s defect oil?

It’s anybody’s guess, but one thing is for sure.  It was not fresh, high quality Grade A coconut oil. Good quality, pure coconut oil that has been properly filtered does not go bad in a hot 100F pantry even if in a plastic tub.  Cheaply priced coconut oil at a discount store runs the risk of being old, improperly filtered (manufacturer’s defect) and not the best choice for your health.

Is it a high risk?  Maybe, maybe not.  There’s certainly not enough data to confirm one way or the other at this point. As for me, I’m personally not willing to trust a huge corporation to properly source my healthy fats – the fats that build my children’s brain and support their immune function.

The lesson to be learned from Mary’s experience from my perspective is that you get what you pay for whether it be coconut oil or any other food item.  Buying coconut oil at Costco, Walmart or some other big box retailer that bases stocking decisions primarily on low price obtained via buying huge quantities at once is a big risk that what you get is going to be poor quality coconut oil that is either potentially blended with cheap oils or is a Grade B, poorly filtered product. Cheap oil that is subject to rancidity and loaded with free radicals risks your health.

It may look and smell fine when you open the jar, but the real test is does it stay looking and smelling fine in a hot pantry or garage after several months?

You can’t tell just by looking at it or tasting it that is 100% virgin coconut oil that has been properly filtered.

Just like with extra virgin olive oil, the only way to ensure a quality product is to buy from a quality small business, not a big box retailer like Costco that buys large amounts of inventory from manufacturers and dumps it on the consumer market at ultra cheap prices.  While you may get a decent product for a cheap price some of the time, I personally am not willing to take the chance with my healthy fats – the most critical aspect of Traditional Diet – that it will be a quality purchase 100% of the time like what would happen if I bought from a small, trusted producer.

Anything can happen and frequently does as a food item makes its way through the Industrial Food Distribution System!

Sarah, The Healthy Home Economist

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Comments (525)

  1. How awful! The brand I buy at Costco is Nutiva–and it seems as similar in taste and smell and properties as the highest quality I have bought via internet and Whole Foods. The label says 1–) extra-virgin, unrefined, cold pressed coconut oil. I hope that’s right!

    • Sarah, The Healthy Home Economist

      Nutiva is a good brand .. I would watch out for the coconut oil resellers with incorrect labels such as above. If you want to double check, put a jar out in the hot garage for the summer and see how it goes. It should stay perfect.

        • Thats funny, I clicked on the link above and this is what it took me to, Radiant Life Extra Virgin Coconut Oil…maybe they think extra virgin just a title that people are familiar with.

        • I’ve noticed that most companies label their oil as “extra virgin”…even ones that ARE high quality. In fact, the only one I’ve come across that doesn’t use that term is Tropical Traditions. I don’t think that incorrect marketing is the best way to determine quality. I’ve bought large tubs of Nutiva at Costco ever since they started selling them there and have been completely happy. The price is great too. Maybe that was just an off brand, but you can always return anything you aren’t happy with.

        • Sarah,

          I’d appreciate some clarification. You linked to Village Green Network and give readers the assumption that they are trusted. However, their “Perfect Cocunut Oil” has the label extra virgin.

      • I noticed what Michele saw, too! This information seems very contradicting. You post a link for a company that is selling extra virgin coconut oil but say that’s a bad sign. And you say Nutiva is a good brand but how are they are a good brand if they sell extra virgin coconut oil? I thought you said company’s who use this term are probably up to no good? This is all very confusing and isn’t helping people like me looking to make the right choice.

        • Sarah, The Healthy Home Economist
          Sarah, The Healthy Home Economist June 21, 2013 at 3:09 pm

          Thanks for bringing this up. I will ask Kathy and Norm of Radiant Life about it. Their Organic VCO is very good quality .. they are sticklers for the best of the best. Also, please note that I said the use of “extra” was a red flag. It doesn’t mean the product is trash. However, if a product uses the word “extra”, it’s a cheap priceand is at Costco, then I would definitely not buy it! Radiant Life’s product is a price that is typical for high quality organic VCO from other reputable companies, plus it is a small business and their items do not go through the industrial food complex. Being a discerning consumer and being able to read the gray areas is important as fooling the consumer is an art form as practiced by Big Food.

          • Just for the record…I have that same Carrington Farms jar from Costco, and have had it for several months on my shelf. I also live in TX and turn off the AC when I leave my apartment. It has not gone off…still has that wonderful “movie popcorn butter” taste and smell as when I first bought it. I have often wondered, though, how they can get the price so low, and I will be intrigued to find out any discoveries about this brand.

          • I, too, have been using Carrington Farms Coconut Oil from Costco. I’ve never had it go bad or smell bad even after sitting in my pantry for a long time. Now, however, I use it up so fast that there is no time for it to go bad. I can’t afford the more expensive jars. This article is very disconcerting. Has anyone contacted Carrington Farms to ask about the quality of the coconut oil? Would be interested to know.

          • Do your research. For once.

            Costco sells Kerrygold grassfed butter, quality grassfed cheeses, Copper River salmon and decent organic produce. They’re a great resource for larger families trying to eat better quality food. Their olive oil was one of few found to be labeled correctly during the adulteration scandal. Their organic coffee is of excellent quality and is fair trade. They don’t sell junk; they don’t sell odd lots; their quality standards are very high. Their handling and stocking procedures are better than most, because they have the resources to devote to getting it right and have some of the best employees in the business. They also pay employees extremely well and offer great benefits.

            Besides, burnt marshmallows and the inside of a pumpkin are two smells as different from each other as they are from coconut oil. Who knows what your reader actually smelled? You trashed a good company with a bunch of bogus, unfounded allegations based on… what, really?

          • christine taylor July 3, 2013 at 8:49 pm

            You say here that if its sold at Costco that is a red flag, but I have found that Costco is a good company that carries quality products and treats their employees better than most other companies. I’m not sure what you have against Costco, but it sounds like you don’t like them much. If a product is bad, that’s one thing, but it doesn’t make it a bad product just because Costco sells it. In fact, they will refund any product that a customer is not happy with, and they carry more organics than most grocery stores. I think you are disparaging a really decent company.

        • They have now since “changed” it on their website. I don’t see the Extra Virgin anymore.

          • I haven’t scrolled to the bottom of the comments, so maybe someone else addressed this… but the easiest way to get to the bottom of it is just to ask. Costco definitely listens to its consumers. If the person who discovered the rancid oil brings it back to Costco, she can talk to the store manager, and if the store manager doesn’t know, then she can call the Home Office about the actual content of the coconut oil. They will dig into it for her. costco’s number one priority is customer service. Mati is right, that they do sell a variety of excellent real food products, especially beneficial for those who don’t live in areas that they can get these products locally sourced. I love your website, I’m not saying you are wrong, but the surest way to find out is to just ask, then decide. Costco doesn’t make money on most of its products; they profit from the membership fees. That’s how they offer bulk products cheaply…they are very interested in high quality merchandise/food.

          • How do you KNOW that? She may have used a scoop or spoon with some contamination on it. You have NO way to “know” what you so emphatically assert, and it does you no credit to write these. I’ve learned a lot from you over the years, from issues you have actually researched. This whole post and your inadequate responses are not up to those standards.

          • Sarah, The Healthy Home Economist
            Sarah, The Healthy Home Economist June 22, 2013 at 4:59 pm

            The article quotes an owner of company that sells Grade A virgin coconut oil who states that discoloration at the bottom of the jar is an indication or poorly filtered oil.

          • Hannah says the brand she bought was Nutiva. In another comment Sarah you mention that Nutiva is a good brand. So is it a good brand or is it a cheap, grade B, poorly filtered brand? Our Costco sells the Carrington Farms Brand. I have used Tropical Traditions for years but recently have tried the Carrington Farms and have been happy with it. My second jar sat in our pantry (in Southern California) for about 4 months and it still smells and tastes fresh and wonderful. Since Costcos in different areas seem to be selling different brands is it possible they are using smaller suppliers to keep the quality higher? I see Trader Joe’s do a similar thing. My Father in Law is a wine importer and distributor but I can buy the very same wines and at a better price at Trader Joe’s that he purchases wholesale. It’s because Trader Joe’s buys in such large volume, even from a small winemaker.

          • Costco is able to sell their items for such a low price not only by buying in volume but also because they make a large amount of the company profits through the selling of the memberships.

          • Agreed Melinda. I’ve learned a lot too, but in recent months the quality of the posts here has really declined and it’s gotten into blatant advertising at times.

          • I have had some brown coloration at the bottom of some of my jars/buckets of Tropical Traditions coconut oil! It still tasted fine and smelled fine. I seriously doubt that this is an indication of poor quality coconut oil, as their coconut oil is very high quality. In fact, the Nutiva that I get from Costco has none of that, ever (we’ve purchased several containers). I have always read that Nutiva is a good brand, and I’ll continue to assume that it is, until I have more proof than this article and comments. The only times that I’ve had any coconut oil go bad is when I wasn’t careful about keeping it clean (let something splatter into an open jar, or used a spoon with something on it to scoop out the coconut oil). I strongly suspect that the term “extra virgin” in relation to coconut is just the companies giving the customers what they want to see. I doubt that there’s more to it than that.

          • Sarah, I’m a little confused. You said, “Nutiva is a good brand”, yet here you said that they are” cheap and grade B and poorly filtered”. As Hannah is talking about the NUTIVA brand she bought at Costco. Which is it? I’ve been buying Nutiva for years in 1 gallon buckets and have never seen any such discoloration.
            Katie@SimpleFoody\’s last post: Perfect Coleslaw

        • So now nutiva is cheap and poorly filtered? hmmmm. It seems like with any brand (even high priced ones like Nutiva) this could happen if you get a bad bottle or contaminate it yourself. Sarah, please stop flip flopping on issues. First you said Nutiva was a good brand, now you call it cheap and poorly filtered because one reader says she saw brown spots on the bottom of her container? How do you know nobody has ever had this problem with Radiant Life coconut oil as well? And Nutiva is NOT cheap as far as price goes…You usually have very well researched articles but this one is all opinions of you and your friends/sponsors. Seems to me you are trying to sell your friend’s products and are upset that big discount stores are outselling them and taking their business…but this article just doesn’t have enough justification for me. Costco is a Godsend for people who do not live near a health food store or cannot afford your Radiant Life coconut oil. Cheap prices does not ALWAYS equal poor quality. You would just prefer people to buy from your Radiant Life friends and sponsors rather than big retailers….Remember who your audience is as this article and a few others I have read lately come across very snobby when you are trying to promote your sponsor’s products by dogging others based on one reader’s supposed experience.

      • My Costco sells Nutiva “extra virgin” coconut oil. Hmmm good or bad….taste, looks, and smells good to me.

      • For started, if everyone is putting Extra Virgin in their label even if it doesn’t exist, Its normal for others to follow suite to stay competitive. I would be more Weary of a site that specifically singled out a large company like Costco for their products. Costco is Extremely stringent with the selection of their products, they generally don’t sell crap. I have that same oil sitting in a cupboard on top of my fridge, Its become liquid because of the higher temperatures, And it’s been there for almost 1 year. It smells as awesome as it did the 1st day i bought it home. I would Ask myself why this site has posted an article knocking Costco’s coconut oil, with out any legitimate tests done on the oil in a lab. This is today’s reporting, anyone will post biased junk. Oh BTW, I bought some from a small outlet, and it was bleached, odorless and tasteless. FYI Costco is a reputable company. And double FYI to the lady that didn’t like her oil, take it back, I will assure you they will credit you. Because that’s how certain they are of their products.

        Regards, from a happy Costco client.

  2. I get mine at Costco and I bet many, many people do. Mine carries Nutiva brand and I just checked and it says extra virgin. Humph.

    • Keep using it. Many use the term Extra Virgin without knowing there is only one pressing for coconut oil. It is not deceptive – just inadvertent.

      • Sarah, The Healthy Home Economist
        Sarah, The Healthy Home Economist June 22, 2013 at 4:59 pm

        Nothing is inadvertent in advertising. It is all conscious with every effort made to sway consumer buying decisions.

        • Including, I imagine, in the companies you recommend. (A completely legitimate business strategy.) But somehow they are not up for criticism for trying to mislead us. Your inconsistency is troubling.

      • I have had a jar of Nutiva coconut oil for almost three years, which I bought at Whole Foods, and it is still good. It also says “extra virgin.”

  3. I’m with Pam… I buy Nutiva coconut oil at Costco – the same brand I researched and scrutinized when the brand you recommended was only available in my area by ordering online.

    • You can always call Nutiva and ask them if they have a contract with Costco. They should be able to answer your questions.

  4. The reader who shared about the coconut oil from Costco can take it back and get a full refund. Costco has an amazing return policy. The lack of the quality of the product should be brought to their attention. If people don’t tell them they won’t know!

    • And if they find many customers are having the same problem, it will disappear from their shelves, I’m guessing. Our Costco sells Nutiva as well– a good brand, as Sarah mentioned. And you can get it at Costco for about the same as you’d pay if you found it on sale at Amazon or Vitacost, only without having to cross your fingers and hope to buy while there is a sale on. Costco is a good company, and if they’re sourcing VCO from a company producing a low quality product, they’re going to find out eventually via customer response and fix it.

      • christine taylor July 3, 2013 at 9:13 pm

        I really hope that Costco doesn’t stop selling their coconut oil. I have been stocking up because I am afraid they will stop selling it. It is good stuff and I love being able to have access to it. My other choice is the regular processed stuff at Walmart. I would rather be able to buy the organic coconut oil from Costco.

  5. I have the Carrington farm one in my basement. I haven’t experienced any off smells yet. I also would like to know for sure if it is cut with vegetable oil. I have used Nutiva. Is this believed to be a good brand?

      • Sarah, The Healthy Home Economist
        Sarah, The Healthy Home Economist June 22, 2013 at 4:36 pm

        If they are an excellent brand, why are they dumping manufacturer cast off coconut oil at Costco that goes bad and can harm people’s health?

        • So one person gets a off oil, well states she has means the whole company is bad. This is poor thinking. What if the person who had the jar contaminated it, it was half full, what if her sense of smell is off? Who stated it was a cast off. It seems like someone is out to sell…

        • Good golly! What a ridiculous thing to write. If you have EVIDENCE of “dumping” and “cast off” goods and “harming people’s health” I assume you would have put it in your post, but it’s not there. All you have is ONE anecdote and a boatload of conjecture. It’s pretty insane to post such attacks on two reputable companies, on the basis of ONE woman’s supposed problem (I mean, how do we know Mary had a problem at all? How do we know Mary even exists? You see how your style of post can create problems?) IMO you’ll be lucky if Costco does not sue you for this. Also IMO when you’re IN a hole, it’s best to stop digging. Instead, you’re digging in your heels here (apologies for the mixed metaphor) and it’s absurd.

        • I’m finding inconsistencies here, as well, although I know you don’t mean to, Sarah.
          #1 When I look up the difference between extra-virgin and virgin olive oil, it comes down to quality of flavor and acidity – the processing is the same. Also, all the websites clearly stated that the words are not regulated in the US at all.
          #2 My Costco sells Nutiva which labels it as “extra-virgin”. You seem to be red-flagging a brand that you say is good. When they could just mean that it’s a good-tasting less acidic product.

          Just my thoughts.

          • Sarah, The Healthy Home Economist
            Sarah, The Healthy Home Economist June 22, 2013 at 8:49 pm

            It seems that a number of brands are using a meaningless term meant to generate sales rather than communicate accurate information to consumers. Tropical Traditions and Green Pasture Product do not use this term and I have purchased repeatedly from these sources in the past. Radiant Life is in the process of changing their label to be more accurate. I would suggest that you contact your favorite brand and complain of false advertising if the word “extra” is used on yours.

        • OMG!! Costco does NOT sell cast offs! I work for a company that sells product to Costco, and have been in meetings with the actual Costco product buyers. Costco has very high standards for what they will sell, and it is very difficult to get a product onto their shelves. It’s even harder to get a product to be regularly stocked, like this CCO. Costco does not sell any kind of “cast off”, “dumped” or “leftover” products. In most cases they insist that manufacturers product SPECIAL lots just for Costco, so you can only get the best version of a product there.

          Unfounded Costco slandering aside, my family has been buying this CCO at Costco for more than a year, and I have been very happy with it. It is as high quality as any CCO I have used. I am GLAD it is affordable for my family so I can use as much as I need/want without it breaking my budget. I have never had a problem with rancidity, flavor, etc.

        • Sarah – have you ever talked to a Costco buyer? Do you know how their business model works? How they negotiate pricing? Costco is not in the market for buying subpar cast offs that is for sure – My husband is a produce buyer for Costco and I know exactly what goes into what they buy, how they buy it and they have far superior expecations than any other retailer. I think if you had a clear understanding of how they work and their extrememly LOW profit margin (hence why they pass that price on to the consumer NOT because they are buying sub-par quality) Costco is know for having the best buyers, demading quality AND pricing and build good relationships of integrity with their suppliers.

          A BIG solution to this oil issue would have been to simply returned it to Costco for a full refund and then asked the buyer directly – they would have worked with the customer and solved an issue and it it came to their attention they had a supplier goig against Costco’s business model and agreement – they would drop them in an instant. Costco has NOTHING to hide that is for sure and they take care of each and every member – hence why they charge a membership (not to make a ton of money…that is a whole different subject as to the philosophy of the membership cost…not about the money as anyone with an executive membership would know, you get your annual memebership and then some back each year with your reward check)

        • christine taylor July 3, 2013 at 9:16 pm

          I think you are making some assumptions about “dumping manufacturer cast off coconut oil”. I don’t think this is true, nor do I believe you have actually done the research. Opinion is fine, but make sure you are not stating it as fact. You are making a statement here that seems like you are stating a fact…which it is not…and most likely not even true.

  6. Question. If there is no such thing as “extra virgin” coconut oil why does Radiant Life sell it? And, why do most reputable companies sell it under this term?

    • Sarah, The Healthy Home Economist
      Sarah, The Healthy Home Economist June 21, 2013 at 2:44 pm

      I will email them and ask. I know Kathy and Norm LeMoine well and consider them friends. Their product is top notch .. I buy a number of items from Radiant Life myself … not sure why they are using the word “extra” in there when it doesn’t mean anything.

      • Or maybe an enormous retailer gets a BETTER PRICE from the supplier, because they, you know, buy truckloads more of the stuff, and then they pass the savings along to their customers. Sheesh!

      • What is “cheap price”? I get a wonderful highest quality oil from Wilderness Family – an acknowledged top seller of all things coconut – for a great price in five gallon buckets. They are much cheaper than Radiant Life or Tropical Traditions. Does that mean their oil is “cheap”? They buy the best and pass on savings for less. You also endorsed Nutiva. I get 74 ounces from COSTCO for $21.95. Pretty cheap in the coconut oil world, but certainly not a cheap oil!

      • Again, I would say that isn’t necessarily the case in this instance. Costco makes their money from membership fees and services, not from buying junk and marking it up. Their price really isn’t that far off of other oils, and if you consider that they probably don’t make much (if any) profit from it, then it’s not really that “cheap”. Call the company and find out before you call it “cheap”.

    • Except in testing, the organic Costco brand EVOO was one of the only ones that was actually pure olive oil. I would like to see some testing and not just assumption.

  7. So, here is the deal. I usually research the brands that I purchase, but in this case, I didn’t. I’m am now using Carrington Farms Coconut and have no problem with it. Yes, it was at a lower price at Costco and I took a chance. I usually spring for Dr. Bronner’s or another brand at my local natural foods store. I’ve been using coconut oil for a few years now and have experienced many brands. This particular brand, for me, reacts like any other quality brand that I’ve tried. I’m really curious about this now because I found this post (http://www.evolvingwellness.com/essay/how-to-choose-a-coconut-oil-comparing-best-and-worst-brands) posted back in 2011. She actually contacted the company and spoke with them and posted it as one of her “recommended” brands. Now, I don’t know how reliable this source is. I’m not familiar with the website, but it might be possible that she got an “off” product or batch. I’m not familiar with this company, but I might call and speak with them. If there actually is an issue with the product, I’d like my money back. If not, and it is really a quality brand – I’d like to know. I have 3/4 of a jar left.

  8. I got the Carrington Farms brand at Costco and I told my husband last week that I thought it tasted and smelled toasty, like maybe a slightly burned flavor. Not a horrible bad flavor, but definitely different than the organic cold pressed that we use from Wilderness Family Naturals (which we had run out of). Interesting!

  9. I buy coconut oil online – the Tropical Traditions one. Is this a good brand? I have both the virgin coconut oil and refined expeller pressed coconut oil. I buy it in bulk and keep it at home but noticed that I still have a jar of the refined expeller pressed coconut oil that I forgot about in the storage. There’s a expiry date on it which is July 28, 2013. Should I use what I can before the expiry date and then toss it or is refined expeller pressed coconut oil still safe and okay to use past the expiry date?

    • Yes, Tropical Traditions (and Radiant Life, Wilderness Family Naturals and Nutiva) are good brands. I would personally not throw it out after the expiry date, as long as it looks and tastes fine. We have 5 gallon buckets that have moved with us from Texas to Connecticut to New Hampshire with no problems, and I’m sure we’re past the expiry date at this point with zero issues. :)
      Amy Love @ Real Food Whole Health\’s last post: Simple Farmhouse Lemonade

    • i buy tropical traditions most of the time and it is pure. i also have heard unofficially that coconut oil really never expires. so i would only throw it away if there is an obvious problem. if you buy in bulk, use only a clean utensil or scoop to get the oil out of the container so you don’t contaminate it. it could go bad that way if something else gets in the container.

    • I strictly use Tropical Traditions coconut oils. If mine expire I use them for uses not ingested instead. Like a moisturizer, children’s hair detangler and makeup remover, etc. I use mine to cook with well past the expiration date and have not ever had a problem.

  10. Normally I am totally on board with your posts but today, it just rubbed me the wrong way. You are just speculating on this product. I buy this coconut oil from my local Costco and I live in Austin, Texas. I have gone through 3 or 4 of these. They are 100% coconut oil. However, some of them have white coconut flakes at the bottom. This could be the reason “Mary’s” coconut oil went bad (because of the protein) or maybe she contaminated it herself. She said she opened it and started using it. Did it smell rancid the very first time she opened it? It is not refined so it has the coconut smell and taste. I have several on my shelf in my back stock so I don’t use them right away. They have never have gone bad on me. I don’t know if it is worth putting it in 100 degree heat to see if it turns rancid. I use it for everything (cooking, baking, baby bum, and on my face). Like most people, I do not have extra money floating around to buy the most expensive brand of coconut oil out there. I would rather spend my money on the best grass fed beef and Green Pastures Cod Liver Oil where top quality really makes a HUGE difference. For me, I will buy Costco “cheap organic” coconut oil. After all, it is organic, cold pressed and 100% coconut oil.

    • Sarah, The Healthy Home Economist
      Sarah, The Healthy Home Economist June 22, 2013 at 8:22 am

      Coconut flakes on the bottom? This indicates poor quality coconut oil that has been improperly filtered. There should be no coconut protein left!

      • I wondered, too, if one can accidentally contaminate their coconut oil (especially the expensive kind) by using a spoon to scoop that was used mixing something else. I recently found out that you shouldn’t double dip your spreader in the good mustard after placing it in the mayo. I’m sure there are plenty of casual mistakes which could have also contaminated her oil. Also, I’m not sure I would say a few flakes would make it worth throwing the baby out so to say. I don’t live in a barn nor do I need to store my food outside. Although I appreciate looking for a more perfect food, I wouldn’t necessarily condemn a cheaper (and slightly less superior) food altogether.
        BTW- I love my Artisana raw 100% organic coconut butter. It’s almost all coconut protein with a thin layer of oil on top. Of course, it’s not coconut oil but it’s delicious and can be used as a substitute for butter as a spread as well as in smoothies and such which I enjoy.

        • When my son was on the raw milk formula, I was making a batch daily, and kept a small jar of Nutiva coconut oil with my other formula supplies. I would add the coconut oil to a small pan of warmed water/gelatin mixture to melt. Though I was very careful, I did contaminate my jar one time. I must have dipped in with a measuring spoon that had another ingredient on it. There was actually mold growing in the coconut oil when I went to use it one day. Thankfully it was just a small amount that I took from my larger jar. I have been very careful to only use clean utensils in my coconut oil since then.

        • Speaking of coconut butter, it’s interesting that the label on Tropical Traditions Coconut Cream Concentrate (also called coconut butter) says it does not require refrigeration. It says to store above 75F for a creamier consistency, and that coconut cream is 100% pure finely ground coconut containing 70% coconut oil. So in this case it seems the presence of ground coconut does not present a storage problem and it can be stored at warm temperatures with no issue.

      • I don’t know if “improperly filtered” = poor oil. Oil that perhaps has a shorter shelf life than it originally would, but I’m not sure that equates to poor quality. Ideal, maybe not, but poor, no. I have bought this brand (and other more expensive brands) and had no trouble with it at all. Granted I go through it fairly quickly since I use it for all kinds of things from toothpaste to deodorant to actual cooking and all sorts of things in between. But I wouldn’t condemn the whole brand because one person got a batch they assume was bad when they bought it. Contamination could happen all sorts of ways. While I appreciate knowing that a term has no real meaning, and is used as a marketing ploy, it doesn’t mean I am going to put that above experience and common sense, which tells me this brand is fine.

    • I haven’t seen any of these flakes in the Carrington Farms brand I’ve bought at Costco. I wonder if they could have had a bad batch?

  11. I have not tried Carrington Farms CO, but I’ve never heard anything bad about it. Just because 1 person allegedly got a bad jar does not mean that ALL of the CO @ Costco is poor quality. Nor does it mean that Carrington Farms is poor quality. I think it would have been fair to contact Carrington farms before slandering them.

    • I did just contact them by email, mentioning this blog article and asking for their input. Here is their very quick response:

      Thank you for your interest in Carrington Farms Unrefined Organic Extra Virgin Coconut Oil. And thanks for referring to the blog post. I have read through the blog and have noticed she is selling another brand of coconut oil. That said, I would like to let you know a bit about ours. I have attached an FAQ that answers many of our most common questions. We are able to offer the price to Costco that you see due the economies of scale. They buy upwards to 60 truckloads of coconut oil per month so we are able to ship and manufacture economically. However, our same brand sells for a much higher price in a local health food store since it is much more expensive per jar to manufacture and ship them a case of 6 then per jar on a truckload. In all our research there seems to be no difference between ‘Virgin’ and ‘Extra Virgin’. Our Canadian label says Virgin as that is the rule for labeling there, in the US we use Extra Virgin on the label. The coconut oil is the same. There are no other oils, or ANYTHING, added to our pure expeller cold pressed coconut oil. We use only raw fresh coconut meat taken from Organic coconuts and press it in the Philippines. Each lot is tested to ensure that we are bottling 100% pure coconut oil.

      Please let me know if this helps answer your questions and if you would like any additional information.

      Regards,

      Debbie Shandel
      Carrington Co., LLC
      http://www.carringtontea.com
      http://www.carringtonfarms.com

  12. Found this on the Radiant Life web site:
    Perfect Supplements
    Perfect Supplements offers the finest wild crafted and organic coconut products available. Popular products include Perfect Coconut Oil – Certified Organic, Extra-Virgin, Unrefined, Cold-Pressed Coconut Oil & Green Pasture Infused Coconut Oil- the perfect blend of Blue Breeze Organic Virgin Coconut Oil, X-Factor Gold Butter Oil, Blue Ice Fermented Cod Liver Oil, and Blue Ice Fermented Skate Liver Oil. Buy 3 containers of Perfect Coconut Oil and save 25% automatically. Visit our store!

  13. Hmmm… under your own “Fats, Oils, and Coconut Products” tab, you have a link to a company called Perfect Supplements. The description of their coconut oil says “extra-virgin”…just wanted to point that out to you!

  14. Do you know anything about Trader Joes organic coconut oil? I’ve never had any bad smells or anything with it but the low cost makes me sceptical, it’s only $5.99 a jar.

    • Trader Joe’s brand is in the WAPF Shopping Guide. And it comes in glass! I recently learned that oils/fats leach out the chemicals in plastics more readily that dry ingredients. So I took back my Nutiva to Costco just yesterday and bought Trader Joe’s.

    • I’ve used the Trader Joe’s brand too and really like it. Trader Joe’s has very high standards. I’ve grilled them on a number of their products and have been very happy with their responses.

  15. We have been using and enjoying the Coconut Oil (Carrington) from Costco. We have never had a problem with rancid smells, off-color, etc. Always tastes and smells fresh and good. We are careful to always use clean utensils when accessing the oil. In any event, it seems best to check into the validity of the speculation (i.e. not 100% pure, etc.).

  16. Toxic-Free Mother June 22, 2013 at 10:22 am

    Interesting… I have found some very high quality brands labeled “extra virgin”, despite the fact this article states there is no such thing as “extra virgin” coconut oil.

    Nutriva “Extra Virgin”
    Nature’s Way “Extra Virgin”
    Artisana “Extra Virgin”
    Barlean’s “Extra Virgin”
    Jarrows Formula “Extra Virgin”
    Vitacost “Extra Virgin”

    The only brand I came across that wasn’t “extra virgin” was Tropical Traditions and they have a good article explaining exactly what “virgin” coconut oil means and how it is derived: http://www.tropicaltraditions.com/what_is_virgin_coconut_oil.htm

    “What is “Extra Virgin Coconut Oil?”
    Some retailers and manufacturers of Virgin Coconut Oils, referring to one of the processes mentioned above, call their coconut oil “Extra Virgin Coconut Oil.” But there are no other processes used to make coconut oil other than the ones mentioned above, so this classification is simply arbitrary. There is no official classification or difference between “virgin” and “extra virgin” as there is in the olive oil industry, since the two oils are completely different in fatty acid composition, harvesting procedures, and terminology”.

    Although I would never buy coconut oil from Costco/Sams/Walmart, etc, I feel safe buying any of the brands listed above as long as it is organic and hexane-free.

    • Toxic Free Mother. please DO consider buying brands from Costco. It is a very good one, as is Nutiva, which Costco sells. And Nutiva says “extra virgin” as well. This post is pure conjecture. Another woman spent a lot of time and effort researching Carrington Farms and posted an article that it is what it says it is. No company can be held to standard for never having ONE jar of something go bad. It happens.

      The article is on Evolving Wellness website and is about “How to Choose a Coconut Oil”

      • i have bought vitacost coconut oil too and i have never had a problem. it seems there is a lot of misuse of the term extra virgin. vitacost and tropical traditions haven’t done me wrong yet.

        • I think it has to do with rules about labeling. In Canada I the coconut oil just says virgin not extra virgin.

  17. I have been using this brand for quite some time with no problems. We live in Central FL without central air so it gets pretty warm sometimes. I have to say that with no actual testing or even personal use it seems pretty unfair to judge. I have read negative articles about “the” recommended brand of cod liver oil as well…someone’s opinion but based at least upon personal use. I’m not sure what everyone else does for a living but we are a family of four with my husband and I both working and it is really hard if not impossible for is to afford all of the recommended products. Of course we all want the best quality available but with raw milk at $11 a gallon, free range eggs at $5 a doz., and the high prices of pastured meats and organic produce….we just can’t do it all! A post like this can make people struggling but trying want to throw in the towel.

    • EXACTLY! thanks Sarah! we are a family of 6 with 1 full-time income and a small secondary income. Let’s be realistic…I have to feed my kids and if I spend what some self-appointed health expert says I have to spend, we’d run out of food within a week! I give anyone trying to eat healthier whole foods in this economy a huge pat on the back. We are trying to do just that, but there is always someone out there to say it isn’t good enough. It will just have to be. Best wishes to you Sarah!

    • I wish I could buy raw milk for $11 gallon. In Canada we pay $22.69/gallon. Eggs are about $5.00 doz. As you say, it’s really tough to eat well. Just do the best you can.

      • Woah Heather!
        I get a gallon of raw milk a week for $50/month (I also had to buy a share in the cow to start) and I’m in Canada. It DID take me 4 years to find this farm and their lovely ladies though. $22.69 yikes! (I sell my pastured eggs for $4 / dozen – just enough for the ladies to support themselves and keep the family in eggs too)

      • We are in Canada and only pay around $8 for a gallon (4 litres) of “milk” and we get our eggs for $3.75 a dozen from a farmers market. But there are no places to get any raw milk on the east coast and there aren’t even any cow shares around here.

  18. I’ve tried probably 4 jars of coconut oil from Costco in 3 months. Sense its unrefined it has that strong flavor of coconut oil and i like it. I tried different kinds before not many but could not tell that much difference. Maybe Costco brand is not the best, but when it comes to choose cheap vegetable oil or expansive grass fed butter to cook with i would prefer use coconut oil for the price. For those large families who have food budget and try to eat clean its hard to be nitty gritty about every single thing and be able to afford. So in my case for those who think Costco coconut oil is not the best quality and those of you who strike for best and can afford it go for it.

  19. I am alos using the same large jar as pictured above, purchased recently from Costco (Canada). However, the label states “virgin coconut oil” There is no “extra” in the title at all.

    • This is because of labeling laws in Canada. I asked the company. It’s exactly the same as the one in the US.

  20. I have bought a couple of different brands of coconut oil and found that one brand I bought had no coconut taste or smell but another had a very distinct coconut flavour and smell. Should coconut oil taste and smell like coconut? (I know that’s probably a silly question but there it is!)

    • The oil that smells and tastes of coconut is virgin oil. The one with no smell or taste is probably expeller pressed. I use both, depending on what I’m using it for. They both have the healing, healthy qualities inherent in coconut oil.

  21. Not to mention, the Costco oil comes in a plastic container. A good oil would be in a glass one.

    • Ha and what about consumers like Sarah who purchase coconut oil in bulk which guess what does not come in glass tubs but in plastic tubs.

      • Sarah, do you have an opinion about buying coconut oil in Bulk in those big plastic (sometimes says “inert plastic–whatever that means!”) containers???? Do we need to worry about chemicals leaching into the product, especially in high heats??? This would probably concern me more that a coconut oil that’s gone rancid, only because there are so many variables that could have been introduced to produce the rancidity (like a dirty spoon/utensils), etc. Your recommendations and reasons/research would be greatly appreciated!!!!

        • sarah, the healthy home economist

          I think that is probably fine .. this is what I have done for years and have never had a problem. It does get very warm in the garage in the summerbut not hot enough to leech chemicals .. certainly not hot to the touch which would indeed be a worry. You can always transfer into glass jars when the bucket is delivered to you if you like to be extra careful.

  22. Writing a whole negative review over one woman named Mary’s bad experience seems, well, silly. Since I started using coconut oil from Costco and loving it, I knew it was only a matter of time before someone posted a review letting me know how inferior it was. After all, if my family can afford it, surely it is not good enough. Nothing I do will ever be enough for you people. Paying 10 dollars for a dozen cage free organic eggs? Not enough! Anyone who really loved their family, and didn’t want to give them cancer would have their own chickens. Buying organic produce? Psh. Did you research every grain you purchased? And why aren’t you growing your own? All of it? Everything? Cooking from scratch? Not good enough. I hope you aren’t using corn, or any corn product, (unless you know the farmer personally and have a sworn statement that he doesn’t use gmo seed.). What is the perfect world look like? Little house on the prairie? Where we are all farmers? At least be consistent and get off the Internet. Because when we all quit our jobs and raise our own cattle and convert our sinful lawns to farms, there will be no one to service your blog. Lastly, if you are going to encourage your readers to use their retirement funds to buy a 50 dollar jar of coconut oil instead of a 15 dollar one you should really have more of a reason then “Mary said.” Too many people take you seriously for you to regularly post such unsubstantiated “information.”

    • HI Lauren,

      Thanks for saying what so many of us are feeling and thinking! Bravo! Love your post. Maybe you should start your own blog too. I hope so for all of us trying to live in the real world. ;)

    • Lauren, your post is exactly what I was thinking. I, too, cannot afford the expensive oils. I try to buy free range chicken eggs, pastured beef, and organic produce but, it’s sooo expensive. Costco’s Carrington Farms Coconut Oil price worked perfectly in my budget. I have been using this coconut oil for some time now without any problems. There is no mention that anyone contacted Carrington Farms with their concerns. That should have been done before this article was written.

      • UPDATE: I stated above that I contacted Carrington Farms about their product and even though it’s the weekend I received a prompt response. :) I was sent a link to their FAQ sheet BUT in ADDITION they stated this to help answer questions…
        “We are able to offer the price to Costco that you see due the economies of scale. They buy upwards to 60 truckloads of coconut oil per month so we are able to ship and manufacture economically. However, our same brand sells for a much higher price in a local health food store since it is much more expensive per jar to ship them a case of 6 then per jar on a truckload. In all our research there seems to be no difference between ‘Virgin’ and ‘Extra Virgin’. Our Canadian label says Virgin as that is the rule for labeling there, in the US we use Extra Virgin on the label. The coconut oil is the same. There are no other oils, or ANYTHING, added to our pure expeller cold pressed coconut oil. We use only raw fresh coconut meat taken from Organic coconuts and press it in the Philippines. “

        • Thank you Christine for doing the footwork and contacting Carrington Farms and sharing their response with us all. It’s nice to have accurate information.

        • Thank you for finding that out. And thanks too, for the opinions expressed above. Normally, I like this blog, but not today!! I use Trader Joe’s CO and also the Carrington Farms. I like both and have never had any problems. Like the other responders, I am dismayed that one person’s bad experience leads to the condemnation of an entire brand of product, and chain of stores as well. As a family of 7, we have to work to eat well on the budget we have. We do the best we can.
          I think that making an obsession of how high quality our “organic-ness” can go leads to a real paranoia about everything that passes our lips. Where does it end?? It’s an imperfect world. We have to do a good job and let God fill in the gaps.

    • I agree as well. I’m lucky to have some really good sources for eggs and beef, but it’s only through having been around and knowing where to look. I hope newbies to real food don’t find this article and take it 100% to heart. I remember being new to real food and thinking soy was good :( (I ended up pitching all the cereals and canned foods when I ate soy.) Baby steps right? I remember buying good oils for the first time… $8 for a small jar of Spectrum Expellar-Pressed Coconut oil versus $3 for a HUGE bottle of vegetable oil. I think it’s great that Costco has jumped on the CO bandwagon. Exposure – get more people to think about their food. Even if the CO isn’t even close to “best of the best” is it not a start? And is it not better than a jug of veg, soy, or corn oil? I love your blog Sarah, but articles like this make us real-foodies sound like real snobs.

      • YES Kristin!!
        I’ve been on this “learning to live the healthier lifestyle” journey for six years. It’s not something we can manage to do overnight. We all learn as we go along and we can only do as much as we can with the resources at our disposal. I’m slowly adding more and more garden space, slowly adding chickens, researching my family’s food like crazy. However – reality dictates that I have to work to pay for the land my many gardens and chickens live on. I need to work A LOT. I can’t just go and do most of my food shopping at the local health food store where a small glass jar of coconut oil is $20. It’s just not practical. We all do what we can.
        I was so happy to see Costco selling coconut oil that I bought two jars just in case they didn’t have any more the next time I came back!

    • Completely agree Lauren!! My level of respect for this site just keeps dropping. I don’t have much left.

    • WOW, you just saved me writing the (almost) exact thing. Thanks! I knew a “Local Produced” farmer in the UK. Had a really good chicken business. Folks were amazed how he could consistently produce such huge “organic” chickens. I visited him to arrange a funeral and was chatting about the operation he owned. When asked about the mortality rate of the chickens he told me it was pretty high. So i asked him what he did with the dead ones? Turns out he ground them up mixed them with meal and “re-introduced them into the food chain” Nice tasting chickens though.

  23. I have purchased two and had no issue. My concern about telling people not to ever Purchase from a big box store makes eating better unrealistic for so many. Costco is carrying more and more whole foods, including many organic frozen vegetables, organic strawberries, non-gmo labeled products and more! I live in a big city and have to drive over 15 miles to get to any type if farmers market! I often keep my mouth shut when telling people how we eat because frankly it is hard. The nearest Whole Foods is selling Cheerios- trader Joes doesn’t label all their items, chickens being feed a vegetarian, soy and corn, diet isn’t good- so confusing ! My point – not everyone can be an expert on every detail – so lumping Costco in w Walmart is Wrong and leaves the need new foodie giving up short because of limited options and time on their part!

  24. Another thought is that it has ben stored in a plastic container. Those chemicals could have leached in the high temps and also caused the weird smell.

  25. I worked for the largest coconut online retailer and have had a lot of experience with “burnt” smelling oils. The burnt smell is the result of over-heating and usually happens with refined oil, particularly expeller pressed. The company I worked for encouraged people to use the product, telling them that it did not affect the benefits of the oil. If the burnt smell was too strong, we sold it as animal supplement. The best hand processed coconut oil in the world has brown particles in the bottom of the container. This is what seeps through the filters and does not affect rancidity. Rancidity is usually the result of using a contaminated spoon to remove coconut oil from it’s container. Coconut oil stored in a cool room out of direct sunlight will last for many many years. We are currently using oil that is five years old and it is as good as it was the day it was processed. I totally agree that “extra” virgin is a marketing tool and has nothing to do with coconut oil.

    • thanks. bob martin, would you say coconut oil practically never expires as long as it is kept clean and not subjected to boiling hot temperatures constantly? i’ve just always heard it never expires and i want to confirm that somehow before i buy extra for storage.

  26. I bought the Costco coconut oil Carrington brand and thought when I opened it that it had a funny smell… I have been using Nutiva for a few years and just can not bring myself to use the one from Costco because of that smell. Glad to know I am not the only one. I wish I knew what the difference is because if they are using cheaper oils in the Carrington brand, it should be labeled” NOT 100% coconut oil. Doesn’t everyone agree? I am sick & tired of lying!

  27. Sarah:
    Can’t you check with Carrington Farms just as you did with Radiant Life and get a confirmation or denial from Carrington Farms ?

    There may be validity to what you say in this article, however, before you call out Costco perhaps it would be wise to check the facts.

    I have been buying from Costco the Carrington Farms brand and although I have no complaints it does not mean the coconut oil is pure. It concerns me deeply to know Costco may be passing off adulterated coconut oil as a pure product.

    • I too would like to know for sure. So far there is no evidence just speculation. How can we find out for sure if it is being cut with vegetable oil????

    • UPDATE: I stated above that I contacted Carrington Farms about their product and even though it’s the weekend I received a prompt response. :) I was sent a link to their FAQ sheet BUT in ADDITION they stated this to help answer questions…
      “We are able to offer the price to Costco that you see due the economies of scale. They buy upwards to 60 truckloads of coconut oil per month so we are able to ship and manufacture economically. However, our same brand sells for a much higher price in a local health food store since it is much more expensive per jar to ship them a case of 6 then per jar on a truckload. In all our research there seems to be no difference between ‘Virgin’ and ‘Extra Virgin’. Our Canadian label says Virgin as that is the rule for labeling there, in the US we use Extra Virgin on the label. The coconut oil is the same. There are no other oils, or ANYTHING, added to our pure expeller cold pressed coconut oil. We use only raw fresh coconut meat taken from Organic coconuts and press it in the Philippines. “

      • thank you Christine! This is what the author of this blog should have done in the first place. I have re-posted your info on Facebook, as unfortunately this blog post is circulating incorrect information.

      • Appreciate the effort Christine. The response from Carrington Foods clears up the doubts about their product. But what of Costco’s reputation? Just wondering……

        • Just reading all these interesting posts. I am the CEO and Founder of Nutiva. We have been pioneering organic coconut oil since 2003 and today we are the #1 selling brand of organic coconut oil. I also personally visit our suppliers and meet with farmers in the PH on a regular basis. We have donated over 35,000 coconut seedlings to small farmers which in 5 years will boost production of coconuts and increase farmers income. It’s part of our 1% donation program to sustainable ag – we will surpass $2M on donations by 2014. Regarding all the questions. Their is no set standard for Coconut Oil. Like many firms we use the term Extra Virgin Coconut Oil. The quality of coconut oil is all over the map. We have long suspected some brands are blending oils. We have viewed such products and tasted them and it is obvious this is occuring. Suggest people find out more about the brand. Are they really just a reseller and have no relationship to the farmers or oil processors ? Sometimes you wll see some yellow or brown specs on the bottom of Coconut Oil. While it is not common, this is natural to coconut processing. It does harm the quality of the oil or flavor..

          • I am assuming that in the last sentence of what you wrote, you meant to say “It does *not* harm the quality of the oil or flavor”?

          • I buy the Nutiva Organic Coconut oil at Costco and am so happy it is available at such a reasonable price! I thank you profusely for offering it through costco to make such a wonderful, pure, and healthful product available to the masses at an affordable price. I have compared it to the other top brands of coconut oil that are sold online and find it to be the same quality, for much less cost. Thank you for working with Costco and making it available to the “every man”.

  28. Richard P. Hobbs June 22, 2013 at 11:44 am

    I thank you sarah for the alert. it is better to be warned of possible problems than ti be kept in dark. My gransparents who were italuan and very picky about qualityonly used philipo berioolive oil in the green labled bottle.
    they said that when they used it no build up of oil woukd accunulate T tip of oil decanter they used.
    it is orbwas 100% cold pressed. Sometimes walmart makes special contract with national brands to priduce one for them exactly the same as sold eksewhere bur if ibferior qualiry. some times it has a different code or bar number. I learned tjusvwhen the had a promise they had lowest price but wad told they had a different cide than the one at sams club. Its good too when we do our own thinking and checkingbiutbon stuf. Even sarahs posts. but lets not fry sarah while at it. she offers from her heart what she can. Thank you Sarah forball your informatibe videosvand posts. I dont know if philipo berio us thevsamevtoday

  29. This post is irresponsible at best, libel at worst, considering there are no facts, no studies, no scientific data…just some woman that had a jar of coconut oil not smell right. If you are that concerned then do some real research and then report. Spreading this conjecture on the internet is not helpful to anyone.

  30. I have a question on bacon fat. I buy uncured bacon. Should I be throwing the fat away? Most health blogs do not list it as a good fat.

    • According to the Weston A. Price Foundation, it is a good fat. I would use it and not throw it away.

  31. I have contacted Carrington Farms through their “contact us” link on their website. I’ve left them the link to this discussion board. Perhaps they will address this issue here for all to see. I use this product without complaint but I’m interested to see their response to what I feel can be a serious situation as a consumer (and Carrington Farms as a retailer).

    • Thank you, Christine, for contacting Carrington Farms. You seem to be the only one to do that. I, too, am interested in their response.

      • Sarah, The Healthy Home Economist
        Sarah, The Healthy Home Economist June 22, 2013 at 4:38 pm

        I posted the objective observations of 2 owners of quality virgin coconut oil companies which is a far more important information as far as I’m concerned.

        • So, in Sarah-world the “objective” observations of competing companies has more validity than the company you have maligned? And, it was not necessary to contact the company you were planning to slam to ask for a comment/response before you published? OK. Got it!

      • UPDATE: I stated above that I contacted Carrington Farms about their product and even though it’s the weekend I received a prompt response. :) I was sent a link to their FAQ sheet BUT in ADDITION they stated this to help answer questions…
        “We are able to offer the price to Costco that you see due the economies of scale. They buy upwards to 60 truckloads of coconut oil per month so we are able to ship and manufacture economically. However, our same brand sells for a much higher price in a local health food store since it is much more expensive per jar to ship them a case of 6 then per jar on a truckload. In all our research there seems to be no difference between ‘Virgin’ and ‘Extra Virgin’. Our Canadian label says Virgin as that is the rule for labeling there, in the US we use Extra Virgin on the label. The coconut oil is the same. There are no other oils, or ANYTHING, added to our pure expeller cold pressed coconut oil. We use only raw fresh coconut meat taken from Organic coconuts and press it in the Philippines. “

        • Thank you for contacting Carrington and following up with their response on this page Christine. Sarah seem to have an agenda on this article and it is to sell her sponsor’s products and dog a product and store just because she is not a fan of any big chain store.

  32. Sometimes I really hate to get your emails with updates to your blog! It forces me to dig in and do some research! At the same time, thank you! Thank you for doing your research and staying on top of things and informing your readers. I buy the Nutiva brand from Costco. It is comparable pricing with Amazon but without shipping it is cheaper at Costco. I am going to put one out in my garage this summer. I love a good experiment. On a side note, I live in CO and Costco has the lowest price on Kerry Gold butter I have found anywhere!

      • You’re right about the price on KerryGold butter. I’ve never seen Mary’s Gone Crackers and Costco but, will definitely look for them next time I’m there. Thanks.

    • Sarah, I have followed your blog daily since its early days, and respect your voice in these matters. Unfortunately, I don’t see where you did due diligence here by only contacting the company you prefer (as good as WFN is). Everyone who has a dog in this fight (even companies that sell to big box stores) ought to be given a chance to have their say. It behooves those of us who espouse WAPF principles to keep the fight clean.

      • Sarah, The Healthy Home Economist
        Sarah, The Healthy Home Economist June 22, 2013 at 4:30 pm

        I contacted and posted the responses of 2 owners of respected companies who sell high quality virgin coconut oil. I also contacted Radiant Life which confirmed that they are in the process of changing their label to stop using the misleading and meaningless term “extra” with regard to virgin coconut oil.

        • But what you obviously failed to do was to contact Carrington Farms and inquire about the quality of their oil, so as to have an even playing field, but instead based your post on a comment from someone who did not like the smell, for whatever reason. Very poor detective work. Please admit you were wrong.

          • Sarah, The Healthy Home Economist

            Unfortunately, I’ve not been at all encouraged with the responses I’ve received from customer service departments in the past regarding low quality, defective items. I favor getting objective answers from objective sources not involved in the problem at hand. This way you get straight answers as I have gotten from the 2 owners of companies that sell top quality virgin coconut oil and know the ropes well (please see the article for their take on the situation).

            I realize some will not like this post and think I should have waited for a double blind scientific study before posting anything questionable about coconut oil from Costco, but in my experience with food that has made its way through the industrial food system, where there’s smoke there’s fire and I prefer to alert my readers to information that can help them make better informed decisions regarding sourcing of their nutrient dense foods. At the very least, many folks checked their coconut oil and will be returning it if is smells funky and not using it which some folks would have done harming their health. :)
            Sarah, The Healthy Home Economist\’s last post: Why Buying Coconut Oil at Costco is Risky Business

          • Sarah, The Healthy Home Economist

            Oh and I should add that it is important to note that this post is not about Carrington Farms … it is about large amounts of inventory, possibly old, improperly filtered, manufacturers defect coconut oil getting sold at big box retailers for dirt cheap. Focusing on Carrington distracts from the larger issue at hand .. sourcing and identification of high quality organic virgin coconut oil that is what it claims to be.

          • What good does it do to contact any of those companies? You can’t verify any of their claims. These aren’t our local farmers. Even the owners, who are not present for the entire process, can not really make these claims the way, say, my local dairy farmer can. All this really says is that you trust the word of some companies.
            Thank you for this post. I have been reminded that coconut oil is a real food and therefore can occasionally go bad. Therefore, from now on, I will only buy it at Costco where I know I can take it back if there is a problem instead of paying very high shipping fees to return a spoiled container!

  33. Could it be that this individual placed a PLASTIC container in high heat and the BPA leaked into the product? There are many brands that use plastic containers to store their oil. This same result could happen with small or large brands. Store in a dry cool place. Be smart!

    • I agree! Telling people to store their coconut oil (that typically comes in a plastic container, especially large economy sizes) at temperatures up to 120F for several months in order to somehow validate its quality is quite irresponsible.

  34. Eh, the rather heavy price of coconut oil is the reason I don’t purchase it. Better not to get an inferior product though!

  35. I bought this exact coconut oil at Costco and it doesn’t say extra Virgin , just says Virgin cold pressed ……..so not sure why its diff from one in picture????

  36. A point that has not been brought up yet, is the hidden cost of mass produced product distributed by huge corporations?
    Also, perhaps we could look at possible consequences of believing we should have everything we want when we want it?
    These seem to be a part of the problem of why our world is in the (sad) state of affairs it is currently in?
    No accusations, just questions……..

  37. This is just one person’s opinion. I have bought the Coconut oil at Costco for sometime and NEVER had a problem with it. Costco is a good company with a very good business plan and treats their employees well. (do some research and see the real difference between Costco and Walmart, do not lump them together as “the same kind of BIG Box”) Costco carries lots of organics and healthy options. Is it possible that that jar was contaminated by by the person using it? Yes Don’t label buying something from a good company RISKY because of a few instances which could have just as easily been user error.

  38. We’ve been using Nutiva for several years until Costco started selling Carrington Farms. Our family like the taste of Carrington better than Nutiva. As a matter of fact my kids can eat the Carrington brand straight from the jar unlike Nutiva which I had to melt in hot cocoa just to make the kids take their daily coconut oil supplement. I buy a lot of jars for fear they might discontinue selling at Costco so by the time I get to open a jar it would be several months old already. So far I have not experienced any of the bad things stated by other other commenters on this blog. I am just happy that Costco is able to sell this wonderful product at an affordable price because my family of 6 do not take any other vitamin supplement aside from Coconut Oil so we consume one jar every month!

  39. I think this brand Costco carries tastes great and I have never had any issues with it!

    I usually buy my coconut oil from Wilderness Family Naturals through a co-op, but our Costco price is very comparable to WFN so I made the switch. I prefer the taste of Carrington Farms, and the convenience of buying in smaller quantities and not investing $220 at a chunk works better for our family (we go through a 5 gallon bucket per year). It tastes very fresh and has a wonderful, slight coconut flavor that does not interfere with cooking. I am so glad to find it locally. It makes me laugh to think that the Costco price is considered “cheap” and pared with the word inferior. I disagree.

  40. This may have been mentioned already, but I didn’t have the time to read through all the comments. When I think of burnt marshmallow, I think of hot plastic. Is it possible the plastic bin it’s in was leaching into the coconut oil because of the high heat?

  41. I’ve been shopping at Costco for many years and I think your assertion that they’re only interested in the lowest price, at the cost of quality, is very unfair. In my experience, they do negotiate for, and pass along, the best prices for their merchandise, but NOT at the expense of quality. I believe they are committed to providing both and do their best.

    In fact, even though it has been 3 months, if Mary wanted to take her container of coconut oil BACK to Costco, unlike any other food store I know they would happily take it back and refund her money – and they’d want to know what was wrong with it so they could address it with the supplier, or stop doing business with that company.

    I once wrote to the President of Costco about a problem with a phone plan I purchased there, and got an immediate $2,000 refund check. That’s pretty amazing customer service.

    Putting Costco and WalMart in the same category is ridiculous and unfair. Costco pays their employees a real living wage and provides insurance and benefits – and still turns a profit. Unlike what we know about WalMart. Very unfortunate of you to make that comparison.

    • As someone who is *very* concerned with supporting ethical companies, I have done my research on Costco (as I did with other “big box” stores that I won’t step a foot into). Costco reputation is extraordinarily stellar. No company is perfect, but this one strives to be. I happily spend my money there for things I can’t find from my local farm and farmers markets.

  42. UPDATE: I stated above that I contacted Carrington Farms about their product and even though it’s the weekend I received a prompt response. :) I was sent a link to their FAQ sheet BUT in ADDITION they stated this to help answer questions…
    “We are able to offer the price to Costco that you see due the economies of scale. They buy upwards to 60 truckloads of coconut oil per month so we are able to ship and manufacture economically. However, our same brand sells for a much higher price in a local health food store since it is much more expensive per jar to ship them a case of 6 then per jar on a truckload. In all our research there seems to be no difference between ‘Virgin’ and ‘Extra Virgin’. Our Canadian label says Virgin as that is the rule for labeling there, in the US we use Extra Virgin on the label. The coconut oil is the same. There are no other oils, or ANYTHING, added to our pure expeller cold pressed coconut oil. We use only raw fresh coconut meat taken from Organic coconuts and press it in the Philippines. “

  43. Hi, interesting post. I live in Canada and I buy that Costco brand of coconut oil, but I just checked and my coconut oil actually says “VIRGIN, COLD-PRESSED”, and NOT extra-virgin oil.

    Hmmm, I wonder why the labelling is different.

    • UPDATE: I stated above that I contacted Carrington Farms about their product and even though it’s the weekend I received a prompt response. :) I was sent a link to their FAQ sheet BUT in ADDITION they stated this to help answer questions…
      “We are able to offer the price to Costco that you see due the economies of scale. They buy upwards to 60 truckloads of coconut oil per month so we are able to ship and manufacture economically. However, our same brand sells for a much higher price in a local health food store since it is much more expensive per jar to ship them a case of 6 then per jar on a truckload. In all our research there seems to be no difference between ‘Virgin’ and ‘Extra Virgin’. Our Canadian label says Virgin as that is the rule for labeling there, in the US we use Extra Virgin on the label. The coconut oil is the same. There are no other oils, or ANYTHING, added to our pure expeller cold pressed coconut oil. We use only raw fresh coconut meat taken from Organic coconuts and press it in the Philippines. “

  44. I have been using coconut oil for the last 10 years or so, before it became the rage. I bought Tropical Traditions and they were the pioneers here. Very good oil. I would expect that most oil is sourced from similar if not the same locations. Kind of like sewing machines being made by only 2 manufacturers but “labelled” with different names, Brother, Pfaff, Singer, Kenmore, etc. You are pretty much being duped into thinking a certain brand is better just because of marketing, and you pay more for it (and, incidentally, get ripped off). I worked for a marketing company too and, that’s what sells an item. Nutiva is also an excellent oil. But, your illustration of the use of “virgin” is silly because it doesn’t mean anything, especially if the brand you recommend also uses it and you deem it to be good. It just affects your credibility really.

    I also bought some Carrington oil and find no difference at all with it and any of the other oils I have used. In Canada, they don’t use the “extra” term as we won’t allow it on labeling. I wrote to Carrington and they told me this. The reason the oil is less expensive is because Costco has “huge” buying power and can pay less per unit. It also may depend on marketing, why the price is less. Maybe Carrington does not need to market due to having Costco as their client. You really should not be slamming Carrington for their oil until you can indeed confirm where they get it from. It just might be the same place that Radiant Life gets theirs.

    I think Radiant Life is a good company but I do know that their prices are inflated, no doubt because they are small. For example, their Bioastin is $39.99 for 50 caps. Another place I buy from sells it for $25.99. I just can’t afford to pay these inflated prices for the same thing. I bought some fermented CLO from them (2 bottles) and paid a whopping $32 for shipping to Canada, which is outrageous. If other companies can afford to ship up to 4 lbs for $4, why can’t they? As the quote goes, “a fool and his money are soon parted” (This is not a quote from the Bible either, by the way). I don’t want to be that fool. Please do more research before making broad and incorrect statements about products.

    • By the way, Carrington Farms’ coconut oil costs $30 on their website for the one Costco sells. So, it’s buying in bulk, as Costco does, which makes it affordable (thanks Costco).

  45. Sarah, your posts carry a lot of wieght with a lot of people. Writing an entire post about this oil based on one email and conjecturing from there is a disservice to all your readers. You have done this before, damaging the reputation of good companies and products and it is not well done of you.

    You owe someone a public apology. This woman did her research and Carrington Farms is a good oil:

    http://www.evolvingwellness.com/essay/how-to-choose-a-coconut-oil-comparing-best-and-worst-brands

    • Sarah, The Healthy Home Economist
      Sarah, The Healthy Home Economist June 22, 2013 at 4:35 pm

      This article gives people concrete ideas for how to assess quality coconut oil and how to determine if you are getting scammed from cast off items at discount stores. It has very valid points and it is an important topic to shed light upon. I don’t expect everyone to agree with my point of view and that is perfectly fine. There isn’t a single post on this blog that 100% of people agree with.

      • With all due respect, I disagree with your statements (a)This article gives people concrete ideas for how to assess quality coconut oil and how to determine if you are getting scammed from cast off items at discount stores. (b)It has very valid points and it is an important topic to shed light upon.

        I am not one bit sharper in assessing coconut oil quality and nor do I know how to determine whether or not I am getting scammed. Where are the valid points, Sarah? Are you expecting us all to place a jar of coconut oil in the garage to figure out if it is pure or not?
        Yes, indeed the purity of coconut oil is an important topic in my mind since so many of us living the WAPF diet consume coconut oil.

        Your article is titled ‘Why Buying Coconut Oil at Costco is Risky Business’ which in my mind is slamming Costco for selling coconut oil irrespective of brand. My neighborhood Costco carries only Carrington Farms brand which you say is adulterated, however, several readers say their neighborhood Costco carries Nutiva which is a reputable brand. So are you out to malign Costco’s reputation for selling impure coconut oil? By the way, I did not know as of your article that coconut oil is graded. Perhaps, this is one aspect of coconut oil I have learned about from your post yet does me no good since the resellers of coconut oil are not required to provide this information to the consumer

        If the coconut oil sold by Costco is impure, you should have provided the result of an independent third party study done on several brands and in doing so educated your readers to be smart consumers. You have not done so.

        Regrettably, Sarah I have not learned any thing from this article.

        • Bonnie, in all fairness to Sarah, whom I highly respect, I think she was referring to the article in the link I posted above her response, not the “post” to which we are all responding. The article gives many concrete ways to assess the quality of the oil you are buying.

      • Are you denying that this article will lead your readers to believe coconut oils purchased from Costco are “cast off items”? All because of one anecdotal experience of rancidity which could have happened for a number of reasons (including contamination by the purchaser)? You would have been better to say, “Hey guys! This person had this experience, and we don’t know WHY it happened, but let’s keep our eyes out to be sure this is an isolated incident.”

  46. Hold on! One of the wonderful qualities of having a detective for a husband is that he is rather quick to point out that there is always two sides to altercations or issues between people or entities. I have had MANY brands of coconut oil from the just plain ol nasty tasting to great tasting ones, and by the way the nasty one was expensive. Just because something costs more does not always mean that it is of higher quality. Eating healthy quality foods does NOT need to be expensive.

    I shot them an email asking them to tell us what process their oil undergoes. I like to ask open ended questions. I also perused their website. http://www.carringtonfarms.com and found the name of a nutritionist that wrote an article for them and shot her an email. The website looks rather uninformative, but so are some of the small scale production websites as well.

    Because there is some questionable practices I will not be buying their products, BUT that doesnt mean they have a POOR product because one lady had a bad experience. If that were the case, Radiant life and all other companies who sell FCLO should be avoided as well.

    We DEFINITELY do not need to leave our brains checked in at the door, whether we are going to costco or reading the healthy home economist, THINK things through before you speak.

    Although I understand Sarah’s point of view and taking a leary perspective of large organizations, we still need to be methodical. When we find out truth then we blast!

    • Thanks Michelle! Would you be willing to share the “questionable practices” you learned of in your research?

  47. There is an article on Evolving Wellness website and is about “How to Choose a Coconut Oil” The woman researched Carrington Farms oil and found it to be exactly what is says it is.

  48. I buy most of my coconut oil in 5 gal buckets from Tropical Traditions but it is the ‘no-flavor’ coconut oil (expellier pressed) that I prefer. Occasionally I like to use Nutiva brand from Costco cuz it has the coconut flavor. I have had no problems with it but I use it up fairly fast.

    Regarding ‘how can they sell it so cheap’ … cuz Costco contracts with companies to buy huge amounts which brings the price down.

    Regarding the Extra Virgin Coconut Oil … my belief is that companies know that the general population ‘perceives’ extra virgin to be better than VCO and to snag the customer that might look at both kinds of labels they put EVCO on their labels. Unless companies are going to explain on their labels that their is no such thing as EVCO, I think the practice will continue. Companies don’t want to lose customers because the customers are uneducated about the process etc.

    Actually my local Costco carries a brand of coconut oil (I think it is HAIN) but the label says that it is processed in a facility that also does p-nuts. My family has nut allergies and I cannot use this brand. My daughter’s local Costco carries the Nutiva brand with no disclosure about facility that processes p-nuts, so that is why we buy the Nutiva brand. So far we are very happy with it.
    Sue in CA\’s last post: Anne S. / Follow Up – W is For…

  49. Also wanted to let you know that Wilderness Family Naturals has one of their top line coconut oils listed as “Wilderness Family Naturals’ Centrifuged, Extra Virgin Coconut Oil”…..and I consider their products to be some of the best out there, with GREAT reputation.

  50. Want to mention that the very first coconut oil I bought online, at iherb.com I think, said to refrigerate after opening. It wasn’t till I purchased from Tropical Traditions that I learned that good quality coconut oil NEVER needs to be refrigerated.

    So if you see a label that says ‘refrigerate after opening’ that should be a red flag that it is not pure coconut oil, even if it says that it is … IMHO
    Sue in CA\’s last post: Anne S. / Follow Up – W is For…

  51. I may be strange but i always store my coconut oil in the fridge, only taking out small amounts as needed. It is kind of a hassle because it does become rock hard, therefore the large container does have to sit on counter before I can scoop my weekly amount out…
    I cannot imagine storing anything in the 100 degree garage, that would be consumed later…
    I just ck’d mine and yes the Jarrows formula is also labeled with “extra virgin”. Ha!

  52. I’m Canadian it’s illegal not to have other oils not listed so I say that this is really not a issue with this brand. One person states her’s went bad and now there is a boycott. Sorry but not buying it.

  53. I have never used the Carrington brand. I do however purchase Nutiva Coconut oil from Costco all the time. It is the same quality oil and brand that I was previously purchasing from health food and vitamin stores, simply at a much better price. I also purchase all of my olive oil from Costco. I have absolutely no complaints. I have only ever received products of excellent quality, taste and smell. I have never had any of the oils I purchase from Costco go bad. I suspect this was a case of accidental contamination by the lady who opened and used the product previously. I love your site but I do feel that this was an unfair review of Costco’s quality. Not everything that is at a good price is inferior. I, like most families these days, have very little extra money. I choose to purchase quality products at the best price I can find. I trust Costco and that trust has been rewarded with quality at low prices for decades now. The only time that I ever experienced coconut oil spoilage was after I purchased a very expensive coconut oil from a specialty ingredients company online. It turned out to be far inferior to my Nutiva from Costco so I went back to Costco for my next oil purchase. Despite your assertion that “you get what you pay for”, it has been my experience that high prices do not ensure a quality product.

    • Thanks – you are absolutely correct. Sarah’s post is completely irresponsible, and her follow up comments even more so. Very unfortunate from a blogger I used to respect.

  54. I am sure you want to be correct and responsible in your statements. ! I do NOT work for Costco but have sold food products to Costco over the last 27 years and want to let you know that you statement “big box retailer like Costco that buys excess inventory from manufacturers and dumps it on the consumer market…” is not accurate. The majority of their purchases are products developed for them in content and or packaging. Their standards are very high and they exist to answer the wishes, needs of their members. Prices are kept low by negotiating with manufacturers and by making very low profit margins – lower than any other class of trade.
    I suspect that the dry grocery food buyer (they have 8 who purchase for the 8 regions) who selected this was not up to speed in this expanding market or this was a bad shipment. They do focus on purchasing from quality manufacturers that they trust through research and experience. They have limited item selection and will have several manufacturers bidding to supply each item. I am sure that Costco would appreciate you returning the product for a refund and telling them what you have learned. You can follow that up with a phone call or note to the buyer also and / or place a note in the suggestion box in the front of each store.
    The buyers do make mistakes but all in all Costco is a retailer concerned with quality as well as value. I speak from personal experience in developing food products for them using their very strict standard.
    PS – I too live in TX and most of the year my coconut oil is melted – just sitting the pantry. It is hot here much of the year.

    • Yes I totally agree with this (and I don’t word there either :) Costco is the most responsible box stores there is. At least in my town.

    • I know several Costco buyers and everything you say is true. Costco operates on a very low profit margin and is able to offer low prices because they buy so much volume. My local WAPF buying group does the exact same thing with bulk buys. They don’t buy up clearance or one off inventory.
      Last year Tropicsl Traditions had their end of year “clearance” sale of the previous year’s inventory of coconut oil. I suppose this would be called inferior or B quality coconut oil. It has been totally fine (though I don’t leave it in ridiculously hot places.)

  55. Well, as distasteful (ha) as this discussion has been, the good news for me is that I didn’t even know Costco sold coconut oil, so now that’s at the top of my list for the next visit!

    • I’ve just added coconut oil to my Costco list too. Along with a few other products I didn’t know Costco sold and that I learned about from other posters to this article.

    • I have learned through the comments that Costco isn’t as abhorrent as other big box stores. I didn’t know they paid their workers well (insurance, benefits), had a low profit margin and made money from memberships, or that they had such strict standards. I will do more research but I have less misgivings about starting to shop at Costco :)

  56. This is just my 2 cents. But, I used to buy Nutiva because I heard so many great things about it. Then, I also noticed the brown sediment on the bottom. It didn’t bother me as I figured it was just from the coconut shell. The thing that DOES bother me about Nutiva AND many other brands is the burnt taste. I have tried SEVERAL brands of “EVCO” and there are only three companies I have found so far that produce a very good, light and sweet tasting oil. One is from Mountain Rose Herbs. The second is Earth Circle Organics. The third I cannot remember right now, but I purchased it from Jimbo’s health food store in Southern CA. It is produced in Mexico in the volcanic soil, but they do not sell large containers of it. In my opinion, they have the best tasting oil in the market. Every oil I have purchased acts just like coconut oil should. But, for me, it’s the taste that will keep me as a customer. If it tastes burnt or rancid that tells me it either is being processed using a higher heat than advertised or it’s old oil.

  57. I am on my 3rd jar from Costco in Ontario Canada. My first jar lasted over a year and lived through melting over and over again over a summer and remained smelling delicious.
    My 3rd jar now has melted and hardened several times and my kids have hidden it and lost the lid a few times. Still smells and tastes perfect. Not sure what you are talking about…

    • I completely agree. I have also always bought my coconut oil from Costco in Mississauga and never had an issue. Also the label does not say “extra virgin” anywhere it simply says “Organic Coconut Oil” and underneath “Virgin, Cold-pressed”.
      Maria\’s last post: WIAW End of May!

  58. Thanks sooo much for your posting on Costco’s coconut oil. I too was a bit learey of buying this coconut oil: 1) because the label did not give me adequate information of where the oil came from, 2) I checked the website of the company and it didn’t give me any reliable info of their source for the oil, 3) the price was way too cheap. I did buy it out of curiosity and my suspicions were correct. The smell of it was very strong as far as coconut smells. I never had coconut oil that smelled like it was enhanced to smell like coconut oil. That was all I needed to not buy it again. You helped to solidify my suspicions. Thanks.

    • Daryl, that is an unbelievable statement. One the characteristics of high quality oil is that is smells just like coconuts! And so it should!

    • Your suspicions are….suspicious! Virgin coconut oil is UNREFINED and therefore SHOULD smell of coconut! You’re the one missing out by not buying it again.

  59. Here is what Carrington responded with when asked about their coconut oil:

    Thank you for your interest in Carrington Farms Unrefined Organic Extra Virgin Coconut Oil. Only fresh raw coconut meat is used in our cold expeller pressing process. First the coconuts are picked from certified organic fields and brought into our processing center. The shells of the coconuts are removed within 3-4 days of picking and then they take the remaining brown part off the outside of the meat. The meat is cut up and placed into the expeller. Most of this process is done manually. The oil is pressed out and put thru a filtration system. It goes thru this system 2 times and then put into drums. These drums are then transported to our bottling facility in North America where we filter the coconut oil again before bottling. Each lot is tested after the pressing in the Philippines and then before and again after the bottling by an independent laboratory in North America.

    Hope this helps explain our process. There are no additives or alterations to the oil at any time in the process.

    Regards,

    Debbie Shandel
    Carrington Co., LLC
    http://www.carringtontea.com
    http://www.carringtonfarms.com

  60. Information sent to me by Carrington Farms today in the form of a PDF in an e-mail. Carrington Farms has read the article that we are discussing. The contents of the email are posted earlier. Here is the info from the PDF.
    CARRINGTON FARMS ORGANIC UNREFINED COCONUT OIL
    FAQ
    1) Are the plastic jars BPA Free?
    a. Yes
    2) Do you use Hexane?
    a. no, our coconut oil is hexane free
    3) Is your Coconut Oil unrefined and do you use chemicals?
    a. Yes, Carrington Farms coconut oil is unrefined and no chemicals are used in the processing of the coconut oil.
    4) Where the coconuts are grown and where it is processed?
    a. The coconuts are grown on Organic farms in the Philippines
    5) Is it Certified organic and non-GMO coconut oil?
    a. Yes, we are certified by Quality Assurance International and all our coconuts are non-GMO
    6) Is the coconut oil made from fresh coconuts, not dried copra?
    a. Yes, we use young coconuts and not dried copra
    7) Is there heat applied in the processing?
    a. no, we use a cold expeller press process
    8) Is it refined, bleached or deodorized?
    a. NO, our coconut oil is Unrefined, Unbleached and Un-deodorized
    9) Can I make cookies and cakes with coconut oil instead of butter or oil?
    a. Yes, coconut oil is great as a fat replacer for baking, cooking, etc. Use on a 1:1 ratio — for every 1 teaspoon of butter, use 1 teaspoon of coconut oil; for 1 tablespoon of oil use 1 tablespoon of coconut oil, etc.
    10) Is your Coconut oil processed in a nut free facility?
    a. yes our facility is peanut and tree nut free.
    11) Why was the Coconut Oil a liquid or solid at the store and now it is a solid or liquid?
    a. Coconut oil changes from liquid to solid at around 74-76 degrees F. The nutritional make up of the coconut oil is not altered at all when it changes from liquid to solid.
    12) How do I make my solid coconut oil into liquid?
    a. the easiest way to do this if you only want a small amount is to put it in a bowl and put the bowl in a “warm bath”. (put the coconut oil bowl in another bowl that is filled with warm water)
    13) How do I make my liquid coconut oil into a solid?
    a. Keep the jar in a cool place. If none is available you can put it in the refrigerator.
    14) Do you use heat in the extraction process?
    a. No, our process is cold and at no time during our processing is there external heat
    applied.
    15) Do you use any animal testing on your products?
    a. No we do not.
    16) What is the breakdown of Medium Chain Triglycerides in your coconut oil?
    a. Each tablespoon (14 g) coconut oil will provide 6.2 g lauric acid, 1 g caprylic acid and 800
    mg capric acid
    17) How much Omega 6 and 9’s are in your coconut oil?
    a. There is 924 mg of Omega 9’s and 252 mg of Omega 6’s per 1 tablespoon (14 g).

    • Thank you SO much for posting this! I’ll be sure to buy Carrington Farms coconut oil next time i’m at Costco!

      • Yeah me too. I wasn’t sure of the quality but I think that’s pretty decent. Better than the value I was seeing at Whole Foods.

  61. Costco is very good with taking products back I think – even if it was something you used/had for 3 month.

    also there was a case where I got coconut oil from a family business in Canada. the two jars were rancid – I emailed the people I bought it from and they no problem sent me back two fresh jars for no extra charge, even paid the shipping. They said it was probably a bad batch, and it happens I think with any products.

  62. Just a little invitation to anyone… look at the great news in this: so far, at least, there has been actually a surprisingly very little to be said (even among such a thinking, researching, determined group!) against coconut oil from at least MOST of these brands in question. That’s GREAT news to me and I fully intend to go on rejoicing in the flavor, accesibility and versatility of coconut oil and imagining all the awesome things it does in our awesome bodies. Life is amazing.
    Thank you Sarah, for bringing up the topic for discussion here.

  63. I have had a fresh jar from tropical traditions that had brown settling on the bottom and they claim to have the “best” coconut oil so I am not sure brown specs on the bottom is an indication that it is bad.

  64. I thought I was okay until I looked at my container of Coconut Oil. It says Extra Virgin on it. I purchase mine from Vita Cost and it’s certified Organic. I’ve purchased it for a year or so now and I’ve never had a problem with it. Should I be concerned that I’m not getting the real deal?

  65. A friend of mine just gave me my 1st jar of coconut oil, and it’s the same brand as the one pictured, but the label is different. Mine was also bought at Costco, but here in Canada. The list of ingredients is simply “organic coconut oil”. If it was “cut” with cheaper oil, wouldn’t it have to be labeled? I’m glad that mine seems good, only a slight coconut scent.

  66. I have bought Carrington Farms Organic VIRGIN coconut oil numerous times from my local Costco here in Ontario, Canada and have never had an issue with smell or rancidity. Furthermore, the label does not ANYWHERE say “extra virgin” it simply says “Organic Coconut Oil” and a sub-heading saying “Virgin, Cold-Pressed”.

  67. Do you know anything about Trader Joe’s Coconut Oil? Interestingly, they stock it both in the cooking section and with the skin care products.

  68. this has been very interesting. As my budget declines, I have been thinking seriously about trying the CO at Costco. I think I would do so now.

    As far as quality CO, I have been buying from Tropical Traditions for years and been happy with them. However, my daughter (who likes their CO) got a quart of it and she said it smelled so bad not even her roommate would try it. (And she eats nearly anything!) Now neither of them can face coconut oil at all…

    So my point is–any brand may have an ‘off’ jar or batch.

  69. Like many here, I cannot afford the expensive brands, and I am now on jar 3 out of 4 of the Carrington farms coconut oil from Costco. I have NEVER had any problems, and I love the flavor! (I use it for everything including oil pulling, cooking, moisturizing, and so much more…) I choose to store mine in the pantry as I wouldn’t store ANY food items out in the heat here in Arizona whether it’s regarded as “stable” or not. I’m sorry that my Costco has switched over to Nutiva – though I believe Nutiva is a quality brand, I have heard more negative comments about their coconut oil than Carrington farms. Time will tell though… I may end up loving it when I get around to opening my new container of Nutiva! I really appreciate the quality organics that Costco continues to research and provide for their customers, and they shouldn’t be written off when they are making these products available at prices more of us can afford. A big thanks to all who have contributed input in their comments. This is not the first article of Sarah’s that I have not completely agreed with, but I appreciate the fact that she has many good resources and certainly opens up the conversation!!

  70. Bashing 2 highly reputable companies for 1 “bad” jar out of hundreds of thousands is ridiculous, unprofessional, and completely uncalled for. Not sure how this is even “news”.

  71. Hi Sarah, I want to start by saying I love all your information you give us. Now I have to say that I am quite confused as to your recent article about coconut oil. I noticed that you mention there is no such thing as extra virgin coconut oil but in your resources of better products they pretty much all say extra virgin. I don’t know what to believe. My husband already tells me I spend too much on healthier choices.

  72. Melody Rose Wells-Minthorn via Facebook June 23, 2013 at 11:23 am

    What about the Nutiva brand? I bought it and it seems great so far.

  73. Erika Scarbrough via Facebook June 23, 2013 at 11:24 am

    I guess different Costcos have different brands. Our’s is namebrand. While not “cheap” it’s lower priced than the lhfs. Ours in Nutiva. My almost empty container has been good for almost a year (bought maybe in Sept last year). It’s hot here June-Oct, so it’s a liquid or almost liquid during those months and solid the other months. No issues at all.

  74. Amanda McCandliss via Facebook June 23, 2013 at 11:25 am

    I was tempted by that big, inexpensive jar a couple of weeks ago but I question everything these days. If it seems too good to be true, it probably is! ;-)

    • No, Nutiva is UNREFINED and a very good oil.

      Why do people keep asking the same questions that have already been addressed above?

  75. So, because one person got a bad jar of coconut oil from Costco, we should all beware? That seems hardly a reason to be suspicious of coconut oils from there.

  76. Jen Willett via Facebook June 23, 2013 at 11:31 am

    They’re just talking about the big box retailer’s own brands, not national brands sold at these retailers. Nutiva is not a brand made up by a retailer.

  77. Jen Willett via Facebook June 23, 2013 at 11:32 am

    Note to everyone who is commenting on this article about Nutiva: they’re just talking about the big box retailer’s own brands, not national brands sold at these retailers. Nutiva is not a brand made up by a retailer.

    • Check the comments, Jen. When native was mentioned, Sarah first said, “nutiva is a good brand,” then later when someone mentioned an off color in their nutiva bought at Costco, Sarah says cheap oil is bad oil. The inconsistency is fairly ridiculous. And she does state that no matter the brand: if its sold at Costco, it’s not as good as if you buy it somewhere else.

  78. I’d been buying Nutiva’s brand of coconut oil from other sources before it was getting sold at Costco. Now we get it from Costco and have never had any problems with it. I think it is important to make good buying choices but I am a little irked by the suggestion that if something is sold at Costco for a better price then it is probably no good.

  79. Jonesy Love Jones via Facebook June 23, 2013 at 11:33 am

    Ok I stopped reading after the 110 degree Texas day in her garage.,. That’s ridiculous. There’s your problem.

  80. Amanda McCandliss via Facebook June 23, 2013 at 11:35 am

    After googling, I see that Carrington Farms brand comes recommended by some other wellness sites. Hmm…

    I do agree though that if it smells bad or funny, don’t eat.

  81. Erika Scarbrough via Facebook June 23, 2013 at 11:36 am

    Actually she says not to buy any oils from them, which is a generalized statement based on one person’s experience. “Just like with extra virgin olive oil, the only way to ensure a quality product is to buy from a quality small business, not a big box retailer like Costco that buys excess inventory from manufacturers and dumps it on the consumer market at ultra cheap prices.”

  82. Jen Willett via Facebook June 23, 2013 at 11:37 am

    Not really a problem. Coconut oil is exceptionally heat stable, and never goes rancid at high temperatures. I think you should have kept reading past the “110 degree Texas day”…..

    She goes on to say the following, right after the point where you stopped reading:

    “First of all, I’ve been using coconut oil and virgin coconut oil for many years and I have never had it go off, even when kept for a year or two in my garage where the temperature easily reaches a 110-120F on humid August afternoons.”
    :) Not a problem. Also: there is no such thing as “extra virgin coconut oil” which is what that woman with the rancid coconut oil had purchased. It’s likely a fake.

  83. Erin Boyd via Facebook June 23, 2013 at 11:38 am

    You have lost another reader for good Sarah. I can’t believe you would even publish such a poorly written and backed up position. There is not one bit of evidence in this article. The comments on the article tell so much, its like you want your own cult following to blindly believe whatever you say. What a joke this page/blog has turned into. Maybe you should take some time off to regroup and come back down to reality.

  84. I actually want to comment on the juxtaposition of a quality store like Costco next to a store that ruins communities like Wal-mart. I don’t think these two stores are anything like each other regardless of whether one person had one bottle of coconut oil go bad. Actually, if she had taken that jar into Costco, managers probably would have taken her concern very seriously and looked into the product defect.
    Costco is a wonderful store that treats its employees with respect through fair employment practices and fair wages, makes sure they purchase products from quality companies (although they carry standard products as well such as Nabisco or Kellogg’s, etc), and gives to the community as a whole. If there ever is a problem with something at Costco, members are notified immediately.
    Walmart, on the other hand, offers little in the way of fair employment practices. They pay low wages, don’t provide a standard forty-hour work week for many, and have little benefits. Additionally, Walmart forces producers to continue lowering prices for their famous ‘rollbacks’ that the masses love; this creates a domino effect by forcing these producers to ship jobs overseas to keep up with the demand for low prices or just flat puts businesses out of business.
    Hands down, Costco is a winner.
    I will continue to shop there while looking for new product updates. Check out their Costco magazine to read about companies that are processing foods naturally and through fair-trade practices. Also, try reading up on the Kirkland Signature products which provide low-cost and sometimes fair-trade opportunities for shoppers and small businesses. Recently, my partner helped build a fixture in Time’s Square celebrating women’s day and opposing unfair cocoa resourcing from companies like Nestle. Don’t ya know that around the same time, Kirkland signature starting selling fair-trade chocolate chips? Doesn’t sound like a bad company to me….

    • You’re absolutely right. Costco’s reputation is the exact opposite of the Walmart (and it’s related companies like Sam’s Club). Their own employees say as much, and so do the distributors who work with them. Every known anyone who tried to get a job as Costco?? It’s NOT EASY. Why? Because their turn-over rate is LOW. There’s a reason for that.

  85. Amanda McCandliss via Facebook June 23, 2013 at 11:40 am

    I buy Tropical Traditions expeller pressed coconut oil. No coconut flavor but that also means not as nutritious as consuming the less processed variety. I love it!

    I do strategically shop for it though. I wait for it to go on sale then wait to see if they put out a free shipping code to go with it (usually once a month or so.)

  86. Jonesy Love Jones via Facebook June 23, 2013 at 11:40 am

    I did read all that. I’m sorry let me rephrase: I don’t believe the article is accurate in suggesting that coconut oil can’t go rancid.

  87. Stephanie Carlson via Facebook June 23, 2013 at 11:41 am

    I bought some trader joes organic coconut oil – and it smelled like soap when I cooked with it. I do not have that problem with other brands . Won’t buy TJ again

  88. Garney Barnes via Facebook June 23, 2013 at 11:43 am

    Wondered if texassss woman leaves any other products out in that kind of heat… 110 degrees is really a no brainer? Hope she doesn’t leave her dog or children in the car.. if she has 1..At the bottom of the article it has a link for the village green market to buy from? How convenient.. Slander?

  89. Jen Willett via Facebook June 23, 2013 at 11:43 am

    She isn’t telling you to not buy any oils at all, though. Just the ones that are likely crapola. And then she tells you to be wary of the ones you’re buying based on price alone, meaning you should know your brand. She says this, and I quote:

    “The lesson to be learned from Mary’s experience is that you get what you pay for whether it be coconut oil or any other food item. Buying coconut oil at Costco, Walmart or some other big box retailer that bases stocking decisions primarily on price is a big risk that what you get is going to be poor quality coconut oil that is either potentially blended with cheap oils or is a Grade B, poorly filtered product.”

    She is warning folks and telling them to be cautious, but not telling them to never buy any oils from them. Again, she’s asking people to know their brand, and not buy something based on price alone. And the brands that we all know and love are exempt from this warning, as is presumed with the article. It’s the generic, or weird labels from companies you have never heard of before that she’s warning you about.

  90. Denver Tina via Facebook June 23, 2013 at 11:45 am

    I buy Nutiva’s coconut oil and Wild Planet’s wild caught sardines at Costco. I also buy organic fresh and frozen fruits and veggies, Kerrygold butter and cheese and my liquor from Costco. I like to support Costco. They pay their workers a good wage and benefits. I will continue to support Costco and my local farmers as much as possible.

  91. Jen Willett via Facebook June 23, 2013 at 11:46 am

    Hey Garney, I’m guessing you have never lived in the south. It’s hot all over. And it’s normal to have days like that. I really think you’re trying to be funny here, but it’s really not that funny. Just because she mentions she’s from the south, or the fact that it’s hot down there doesn’t mean she’s ignorant or stupid, or doesn’t know what ‘heat’ is.

  92. Costco carries most of their products on consignment. The goal for lots of vendors is to get their items IN so that their brand is exposed to so many. Once the items sell the company gets paid…. so there is no advantage to someone ‘selling’ Costco bad stuff due to the fact the items will be returned and the co will loose all of that money and the opportunity to have anything in Costco again. In my area we too have Nutiva, the same products I have been buying in bulk online are now available down the hill at a great price. They also have Nutiva chia seeds for a great price and my co-op has the nutiva hemp protein at a better price than Nutiva direct.

    Just like any product from any store, pay attention to what you are getting and why you want to get it there. Sometimes we all learn lessons.
    April\’s last post: My best home remedies part 1

  93. Amanda McCandliss via Facebook June 23, 2013 at 11:48 am

    You should be questioning where your food comes from. I don’t understand why you’re taking it so personally.

  94. Jonesy Love Jones via Facebook June 23, 2013 at 11:49 am

    Thank you for “quoting” what I’ve already gone through and listing the almost entire article again to prove your belief in it. I wish I had your time and energy :)

  95. Mary McCandrew Babst via Facebook June 23, 2013 at 11:50 am

    I just read a few weeks ago on a Paleo site that she recommends the Carrington farms organic at Costco. More to ponder

  96. Why would it be the measure whether you can leave any oil in any weather, let alone very hot, for months? That’s absurd to me– whether using for eating or therapeutic or cosmetic purpose.

  97. Karen Peterson Douglass via Facebook June 23, 2013 at 11:51 am

    My husband designs packaging machines and said it could have been a mechanical breakdown in the packaging and perhaps something like oil from the machine could have caused a problem. He said (quite wisely) if it only comes from one person, wait and see. So probably need more testimonies of it going bad. I use the oil all the time and never have a problem, always smells lovely; I put it in my coffee which is quite hot and it always smells and tastes wonderful!

  98. Nancy Cheever-Bryant via Facebook June 23, 2013 at 11:52 am

    I like Costcos and I do not think it’s risky business to buy there. The coconut oil It is cold pressed, extra virgin, organic and Costcos is very careful about knowing their products and farms with confirming all sources. Sounds a little liable calling them risky.

  99. Jodie Hagan via Facebook June 23, 2013 at 11:53 am

    When tested CostCo’s organic extra virgin olive oil proved to be the real thing, and was NOT one of the tainted olive oils coming from the Italian mafia. Costco is all about quality control.

    • I’ll keep an eye out for the article too, Jen as I saw and read it maybe last year? Of all the so-called good EVOOs out there, Costco was one of five or so brands that was actually pure and not tainted with filler oils. It was their store brand, Kirkland’s Organic EVOO, not their non-organic.

  100. That is not true; I buy mine at Trader Joes where it is 5.99 for 16 ounces and it is from a very reputable supplier. This information was given to me by the people who know everything about coconut oil; Dr. Bruce & Leslie Fife.

  101. Jodie Hagan via Facebook June 23, 2013 at 11:56 am

    CostCo is not just another “big box” store. You have to be a member to shop there. They are all about quality control from their organic ground beef to their organic extra virgin olive oil. 70% of olive oils tested show that they have been mixed with cheaper lower quality oil (thanks Italian mafia!), but when Costco’s Kirkland brand of organic extra virgin was tested, it proved to be the real deal. Do a little more research on Costco before grouping it with Walmart! Your entire article is based around what someone said their oil smelled like. That is some serious research there! If by some chance she did get a bad batch of coconut oil, she can return it to Costco for a full refund or a new jar of coconut oil. I’ve been buying organic coconut oil from Costco and the quality has been nothing but wonderful.

  102. Jen Willett via Facebook June 23, 2013 at 11:56 am

    I think it’s kinda funny how….the movie The Godfather 2 had the olive oil company (named ‘Genco Pura’) as the “this is how Vito Corleone got started in America”…it served as both seed money and cover for their illicit activities, lol…

  103. Jen Willett via Facebook June 23, 2013 at 11:59 am

    I don’t see her say that anywhere in the article; I think she’s only asking people to be mindful of where their food comes from, and to know the brand you’re buying. Nutiva is a good brand, and doesn’t fall into her warnings. It’s the generic retailer brands and the off-brands that nobody has seen elsewhere really that she’s warning people to be wary of. She’s not telling people to not buy brands we know and trust just because they’re sold at Costco…

    • Jen, if you re-read the article and then read Sarah’s responses to the MANY criticisms of it, you’ll see that’s exactly what she says. If it’s affordable, it must be crap. It’s “risky” to shop at Costco. Costco and WalMart are the same kind of store and should be avoided at all costs. They sell “manufacturers’ defects”. We are being “scammed” if the price is affordable, And so on. Pure nonsense.

      There’s a whole lot more/better information in the comments here, many by people who did the actual research that SHOULD have gone into the article, but did not.

    • Actually she says not to buy anything at Costco — “the only way to ensure a quality product is to buy from a quality small business, not a big box retailer like Costco that buys excess inventory from manufacturers and dumps it on the consumer market at ultra cheap prices.”

      This comment is actually not correct. Costco does not buy excess inventory.

  104. Kyla Festerly via Facebook June 23, 2013 at 12:00 pm

    We buy our Nutiva coconut oil and our Kerrygold butter there and have never had a problem. Nothing has ever gone rancid on us.

  105. Sorry, but I have to agree with many others here: looping Costco into this seems like a shock-value tactic more than anything else. I buy my Nutiva Coconut Oil from Costco and have had excellent results with it for both cooking, raw eating and body care products. Costco has some of the most rigid quality control standards for suppliers in the industry and if a customer buys something and doesn’t like it for whatever reason, Costco will, without question, refund the customers money. As an employer they also consistently get excellent marks for internal promotion, fair pay, good benefits and lack of employee turnover. They make a company wide effort to carry and bring in more organic products, which isn’t perfect but it’s a start. High-value products and good customer service tend to earn Costco pretty loyal customers, as I think many of these comments show.

  106. Christine Blank via Facebook June 23, 2013 at 12:04 pm

    Carrington Coconut Oil is a REAL food….respect it…110 degrees, I don’t think so. The following is from Carrington Farms website (and the oil in question in the article) Shelf Life: Carrington Farms Unrefined Organic Extra Virgin Coconut Oil has a shelf life of 2 years. It’s pretty safe to assume it will be fine for much longer but after the expiration date please look for signs of spoilage after the printed date. Spoilage signs will include discoloration, odor, mold, and off taste.

  107. Christine Blank via Facebook June 23, 2013 at 12:06 pm

    Real Food goes bad eventually, especially if it’s contaminated at any point. :) One has to respect that :)

  108. Jeannie Owen Miller via Facebook June 23, 2013 at 12:07 pm

    I say the proof is in the pudding…I have been personally using Nutiva brand as well with no problems. I guess the adage-’Don’t knock it til you tried it’ is true here because, if it’s called ‘Extra Virgin’ are we to believe now that it’s being labeled with an incorrect definition of the product? http://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/extra-virgin A meaningless point to bring up. Perhaps it would be a good idea to research the company who makes it as well before you buy it should you scrutinize what you use, I did. I have bought the so called, smaller more pricier versions of coconut oil and tried them only to discover they had no scent and were excessively oily. Putting Lard on your skin, will reap the same result as a moisturizing agent too and it has no scent, will it help your health? No. Will Lard act as a sunscreen? No. Given the research by trying the product now for more than a year, and I am sun sensitive, Nutiva brand, has the same quality results as the expensive ones found in organic food stores and online, plus it smells great.

  109. Jeannie Owen Miller via Facebook June 23, 2013 at 12:10 pm

    Plus, the price is right only because Costco knows how to rook companies into marketing their products in their stores by low balling the cost. Quality product or not.

  110. Jeannie Owen Miller via Facebook June 23, 2013 at 12:10 pm

    Plus, the price is right only because Costco knows how to rook companies into marketing their products in their stores by low balling the cost. Quality product or not.

  111. Jennifer Shevchik via Facebook June 23, 2013 at 12:10 pm

    I lost all respect for her after her absolutely OUTRAGEOUS comments about breastfeeding. Glad you have seen the light.

  112. I would like to hear more about other’s EXPERIENCES with this specific coconut oil who live in very hot places…. Good and Bad experiences please. Not looking for comments from people who are just reading info off the internet and going by just that thanks! I know how to do my own research online but the part of my research I am looking for right now is personal experience… Thanks so much in advance!

  113. Bobbie Jo Dowling via Facebook June 23, 2013 at 12:18 pm

    figures. I bought some. haven’t used it on my face yet as I still have some organic fiji oil left. Burns my birches y’all!

  114. Rivka Kim Tamir via Facebook June 23, 2013 at 12:20 pm

    someone called the company, there are no added ingredients. Costco buys in bulk and therefore they are able to reduce costs, bottom line, so it may not be the top of the line coconut oil on the market but it certainly is not the worst either.

  115. Serena Jason via Facebook June 23, 2013 at 12:20 pm

    Wow Sarah,im so dissapointed to read how you responded to some of the comments on your post (and to read the post itself). You’ve lost a reader..

  116. Michelle Smith via Facebook June 23, 2013 at 12:25 pm

    I don’t think this article is fair. Buying coconut oil at Costco is not the problem. Buying the brand mentioned, and possibly the manner in which it was stored, is. The picture and the title need to be more congruent with the brand being discussed.

  117. Michelle Smith via Facebook June 23, 2013 at 12:25 pm

    I don’t think this article is fair. Buying coconut oil at Costco is not the problem. Buying the brand mentioned, and possibly the manner in which it was stored, is. The picture and the title need to be more congruent with the brand being discussed.

  118. Brandy Buskow via Facebook June 23, 2013 at 12:27 pm

    I buy this oil and mine says it is cold pressed virgin coconut oil and I have never had a problem. I buy it because in Canada it costs an arm and a leg to get coconut oil. I haven’t even attempted to buy from Tropical Traditions because it is so expensive just to ship here let alone the price of the oil. I was buying Nutiva for twice the price plus shipping.

  119. When my Costco started carrying Carrington Farms coconut oil, I did my own research and decided it was a good choice for my family. I’ve been very happy with it. Maybe it isn’t the best one out there, but most people simply can’t afford the “best” of every type of food…especially if it’s something you use a lot. I’m grateful that I can easily find local grass fed beef, pastured eggs, and raw milk from grass fed cows, but it’s very expensive to feed two growing children in addition to my husband and myself. I don’t think it’s fair to single Costco out; there are some quality foods there. Until recently, I was buying large packs of KerryGold butter at Costco for a great price…it was the exact same product our local Fresh Market sells for twice the price.

  120. If the oil shouldn’t have anything in it except coconut oil, then what’s up with this stuff: http://www.amazon.com/Dr-Bronner-Coconut-Kernel-liquid/dp/B0052AHU38/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1372004340&sr=8-1&keywords=dr+bronner+coconut+oil ? It’s dr bronner’s, a reputable (expensive) brand, selling “whole kernel” coconut oil, which purposely has brown flecks in it. I’ve gotten it at a local natural grocery. If co shouldn’t have any brown colors or inconsistency, why do they sell this stuff for top dollar, and what’s the difference between this and a batch that may have some brown matter or discoloration at the bottom? I don’t doubt the person who initiated this post has a “bad batch” or somehow had contaminated goods, but it seems unreasonable to then write a post condemning that and any other reasonably-priced brands. Costco, by definition, is a bulk warehouse. Nutiva sold there is maybe $1-$2 cheaper per pound than the cheapest I could find it elsewhere, but that makes sense to me. What doesn’t make a lot of sense is taking one dubious case of contaminated oil and making everyone worry that what they buy is inferior, with no evidence to firmly back that up.

  121. I bought the carrington farms brand at Costco for the second time, and this time it has a really strong smoked flavor, I can’t even use it it’s that strong. Is it just me or has anyone else experienced this? I may have bought it a month or two ago.

  122. Elizabeth McIntosh via Facebook June 23, 2013 at 12:33 pm

    I’ve had a jar of Carrington for 3 months with no problems. I live near Dallas.

  123. This is a completely absurd article. It’s based on one person who stupidly kept her coconut oil in the garage. I read ALL of the comments from the blog’s audience from start to finish. If you read the comments below the blog you will actually learn more about this product than the article because some of the readers of the blog actually took time to look into the product (more than I can say for the girl who wrote the article). Carrington Farms has already responded to this issue and I think it would be wise to STOP sharing this on Facebook because it is a great product. No hexane is used in its production, it’s produced in a peanut and tree nut-free facility, it’s cold-pressed, organic and unrefined. The container is made of plastic that is BPA-free. I’ve been using this product for a long time now (I have no connection to other companies who compete with Carrington Farms or CF itself). I also am not connected with Costco other than I have a membership because they have higher quality products at better prices than Sam’s Club and other wholesale retailers. This is a simple economics lesson. You can get a good product from a larger retailer who is able to purchase a lot of it and re-sell at a lower price. Or you can go to Whole Foods and pay twice the amount for a product that is equally good. You choose.

  124. Christine Blank via Facebook June 23, 2013 at 12:38 pm

    CARRINGTON FARMS ORGANIC UNREFINED COCONUT OIL
    FAQ
    1) Are the plastic jars BPA Free?
    a. Yes
    2) Do you use Hexane?
    a. no, our coconut oil is hexane free
    3) Is your Coconut Oil unrefined and do you use chemicals?
    a. Yes, Carrington Farms coconut oil is unrefined and no chemicals are used in the processing of the coconut oil.
    4) Where the coconuts are grown and where it is processed?
    a. The coconuts are grown on Organic farms in the Philippines
    5) Is it Certified organic and non-GMO coconut oil?
    a. Yes, we are certified by Quality Assurance International and all our coconuts are non-GMO
    6) Is the coconut oil made from fresh coconuts, not dried copra?
    a. Yes, we use young coconuts and not dried copra
    7) Is there heat applied in the processing?
    a. no, we use a cold expeller press process
    8) Is it refined, bleached or deodorized?
    a. NO, our coconut oil is Unrefined, Unbleached and Un-deodorized
    9) Can I make cookies and cakes with coconut oil instead of butter or oil?
    a. Yes, coconut oil is great as a fat replacer for baking, cooking, etc. Use on a 1:1 ratio — for every 1 teaspoon of butter, use 1 teaspoon of coconut oil; for 1 tablespoon of oil use 1 tablespoon of coconut oil, etc.
    10) Is your Coconut oil processed in a nut free facility?
    a. yes our facility is peanut and tree nut free.
    11) Why was the Coconut Oil a liquid or solid at the store and now it is a solid or liquid?
    a. Coconut oil changes from liquid to solid at around 74-76 degrees F. The nutritional make up of the coconut oil is not altered at all when it changes from liquid to solid.
    12) How do I make my solid coconut oil into liquid?
    a. the easiest way to do this if you only want a small amount is to put it in a bowl and put the bowl in a “warm bath”. (put the coconut oil bowl in another bowl that is filled with warm water)
    13) How do I make my liquid coconut oil into a solid?
    a. Keep the jar in a cool place. If none is available you can put it in the refrigerator.
    14) Do you use heat in the extraction process?
    a. No, our process is cold and at no time during our processing is there external heat
    applied.
    15) Do you use any animal testing on your products?
    a. No we do not.
    16) What is the breakdown of Medium Chain Triglycerides in your coconut oil?
    a. Each tablespoon (14 g) coconut oil will provide 6.2 g lauric acid, 1 g caprylic acid and 800
    mg capric acid
    17) How much Omega 6 and 9’s are in your coconut oil?
    a. There is 924 mg of Omega 9’s and 252 mg of Omega 6’s per 1 tablespoon (14 g).

  125. Christine Blank via Facebook June 23, 2013 at 12:38 pm

    CARRINGTON FARMS ORGANIC UNREFINED COCONUT OIL
    FAQ
    1) Are the plastic jars BPA Free?
    a. Yes
    2) Do you use Hexane?
    a. no, our coconut oil is hexane free
    3) Is your Coconut Oil unrefined and do you use chemicals?
    a. Yes, Carrington Farms coconut oil is unrefined and no chemicals are used in the processing of the coconut oil.
    4) Where the coconuts are grown and where it is processed?
    a. The coconuts are grown on Organic farms in the Philippines
    5) Is it Certified organic and non-GMO coconut oil?
    a. Yes, we are certified by Quality Assurance International and all our coconuts are non-GMO
    6) Is the coconut oil made from fresh coconuts, not dried copra?
    a. Yes, we use young coconuts and not dried copra
    7) Is there heat applied in the processing?
    a. no, we use a cold expeller press process
    8) Is it refined, bleached or deodorized?
    a. NO, our coconut oil is Unrefined, Unbleached and Un-deodorized
    9) Can I make cookies and cakes with coconut oil instead of butter or oil?
    a. Yes, coconut oil is great as a fat replacer for baking, cooking, etc. Use on a 1:1 ratio — for every 1 teaspoon of butter, use 1 teaspoon of coconut oil; for 1 tablespoon of oil use 1 tablespoon of coconut oil, etc.
    10) Is your Coconut oil processed in a nut free facility?
    a. yes our facility is peanut and tree nut free.
    11) Why was the Coconut Oil a liquid or solid at the store and now it is a solid or liquid?
    a. Coconut oil changes from liquid to solid at around 74-76 degrees F. The nutritional make up of the coconut oil is not altered at all when it changes from liquid to solid.
    12) How do I make my solid coconut oil into liquid?
    a. the easiest way to do this if you only want a small amount is to put it in a bowl and put the bowl in a “warm bath”. (put the coconut oil bowl in another bowl that is filled with warm water)
    13) How do I make my liquid coconut oil into a solid?
    a. Keep the jar in a cool place. If none is available you can put it in the refrigerator.
    14) Do you use heat in the extraction process?
    a. No, our process is cold and at no time during our processing is there external heat
    applied.
    15) Do you use any animal testing on your products?
    a. No we do not.
    16) What is the breakdown of Medium Chain Triglycerides in your coconut oil?
    a. Each tablespoon (14 g) coconut oil will provide 6.2 g lauric acid, 1 g caprylic acid and 800
    mg capric acid
    17) How much Omega 6 and 9’s are in your coconut oil?
    a. There is 924 mg of Omega 9’s and 252 mg of Omega 6’s per 1 tablespoon (14 g).

  126. Christine Blank via Facebook June 23, 2013 at 12:41 pm

    After Carrington Farms read this article: “We are able to offer the price to Costco that you see due the economies of scale. They buy upwards to 60 truckloads of coconut oil per month so we are able to ship and manufacture economically. However, our same brand sells for a much higher price in a local health food store since it is much more expensive per jar to ship them a case of 6 then per jar on a truckload. In all our research there seems to be no difference between ‘Virgin’ and ‘Extra Virgin’. Our Canadian label says Virgin as that is the rule for labeling there, in the US we use Extra Virgin on the label. The coconut oil is the same. There are no other oils, or ANYTHING, added to our pure expeller cold pressed coconut oil. We use only raw fresh coconut meat taken from Organic coconuts and press it in the Philippines. “

  127. Vashti McMurray via Facebook June 23, 2013 at 12:42 pm

    This blog post is an absolute JOKE. One person’s CO allegedly went bad, therefore ALL CO sold at Costco is low quality…Huh? First off she never even contacted Carrington Farms or Costco before making absurd assumptions about the coconut oil. Second, she states that if the CO is cheaper then its low quality, how ridiculous!
    Costco has lower prices because of their incredible buying power. For example, Costco sells Carrington Farms CO for about $16-19 for a 54oz tub, the same size is $30 on their website. And as far a labeling, here in Canada all CO is labeled ‘Virgin’ and in the US most CO (including the ones this blogger endorses) are labeled ‘extra virgin’. The product is the same. Carrington Farms has all of the info on the CO on their website, and you can also contact them for additional information, something this blogger didn’t do. In fact, I learned more about this coconut oil from the comments on this blog post then the actual blog post. And ironically, because of this blog post my next tub of CO will be Carrington Farms brand!

  128. Where’s the proof did they rest costcos products this is pure media slander I use this product and it smell like fresh coconut oil everytime is it possible this person could of contaminated this product some other way Ive never had an issue I love it

  129. Lindsey Snyder Griffiths via Facebook June 23, 2013 at 12:45 pm

    Has anyone thought that this might of been a bad batch? It happens. I’ve had “high” quality food products that have been off. A quick call to the company usually results in a replacement and alerts them that a batch may have not been up to their quality standards. Has anyone actually called this company? It seems pretty harsh to slander a company by posting speculation cited by one person.

  130. Laura Anderson via Facebook June 23, 2013 at 12:46 pm

    I asked you about this oil sometime last year when I first encountered it, one other note…I always buy Gold Tropical Traditions Oil, and one of the big gallon size plastic jug YES GOLD ONE..had A LOT OF coconut floating at the bottom..this never happened before, I still used it, yet reading this post it seams this is due to poor filtering…so buying “the best and most expensive TROPICAL TRADITIONS” dosnt always yield a quality product, maybe a little better, but after thsi happened to me I am not so sure. I need to buy more real soon, and not sure if I trust the brand I have been so happy with before this happened, especially since it is a fact that the demand is sky high now and even the good companies are skimping on there qujilitly just to keep up with the demand.

  131. Lydia Hackler via Facebook June 23, 2013 at 12:47 pm

    I know for a fact that Costco does not sell subpar merchandise. If this was the case they would not be selling this item, you mentioned your friends business several time and looks like you could hardly be unbiased

  132. Sharon A. Cohen via Facebook June 23, 2013 at 12:47 pm

    You say, Sarah, to buy from a reputable company and link to one named Village Green? Well, here’s their definition:

    “Perfect Supplements offers the finest wild crafted and organic coconut products available. Popular products include Perfect Coconut Oil – Certified Organic, Extra-Virgin, Unrefined, Cold-Pressed Coconut Oil. . .”

    Extra/virgin coconut oil!! Hello?

  133. Lindsey Snyder Griffiths via Facebook June 23, 2013 at 12:49 pm

    Most of us don’t have blog sponsors to pay for our foods. Some of us are raising a family on one paycheck with very little wiggle room financially. Costco sells many things that I couldn’t afford through one of your affiliates. There is a ridiculous markup in many of these places.

  134. Funny, I used to buy this brand at Wholefoods and Mom’s Organic Market, and it is found in several, reputable health food stores. The only difference is that I was paying 25% more at those stores. Thrilled to find a less expensive option at Costco, and frankly, unless we are making the oil ourselves, any company can say or market the product as they choose. You aren’t there when they are making something that claims to be better just because price is higher. Wow, we Americans are really naive.

  135. Sherry Benge via Facebook June 23, 2013 at 12:52 pm

    It is expensive for me to ship from tropical traditions as well – I think they charge waaaay too much for shipping. There were things I would’ve bought from them along the way, but shrinked back at shipping costs. Everyone else’s is cheaper.

    • They fairy regularly have “free shipping” days – in fact I think today is one. I wait for the free shipping, because I totally understand not wanting to pay for that. You should sign up for their emails/FB posts so you know when the free shipping promo happens. :)

  136. RE Costco products. FYI, in a recent study testing olive oil purity, Costco’s branded organic extra virgin olive oil was found to be pure, vs numerous other common brands that weren’t. Many of Costco’s brand label products are, in-fact, national/well-known brands labelled for resale there, just as occurs in “regular” grocery stores with their store brands. After this article, it would be nice to have a good list of acceptable & reasonably priced coconut oil choices–ie, where does Trader Joe’s fare?

  137. Sherry Benge via Facebook June 23, 2013 at 12:55 pm

    That’s why I went ahead with the Carrington purchase in the first place at Costco adn have bought several. I’ll buy a different brand and compare, but can use the carrington for non-consumption items maybe if I notice a difference. Need to look into it more.

  138. Miranda Cj Harding via Facebook June 23, 2013 at 12:57 pm

    I have bought mulitple tubs of the Nutiva brand of coconut oil from Costco and been plenty happy with it. I used to buy it at a local healthfood store, but when Costco came along w a larger size of the SAME brand for less, it was an obvious choice for me to pay less. If it was a brand I was unfamiliar with I would do my homework first. I would personally never store anything that is in a plastic tub in a room that gets that hot.

  139. Susan West Olvera via Facebook June 23, 2013 at 1:00 pm

    I’ve been using Costco’s coconut oil for months now and have never had it go bad or rancid. Our home is currently about 82 degrees on average, our current bottle has been opened and we’ve had it for two months. It smells delicious like coconut, very unlike the organic coconut oil at Whole Foods.

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  141. Cynthia, I agree with most of your post, but I don’t think most Americans are naive. You can tell that by all the comments here that correctly point out how ridiculous Sarah’s post is. We understand not to trust reviews that lack any factual basis and consist solely of ONE anecdote from a possibly fictional person, with no research other than seeking comments from competing companies and no embarrassment when it’s pointed out the companies SHE shills for advertise exactly the same way. Most people commenting here are shocked and disappointed by such shoddy “reporting.” We’re not naive.

    I have the highest respect for Costco. The company policies are admirable and its products represent very high quality. Lumping them in with WalMart and claiming they sell cheap manufacturers cast offs (!) with no concern for quality is absurd and offensive.

    I used to respect Sarah, but this post causes me to re-think all the information I’ve absorbed here over the years.

  142. Read this and then move to New Zealand to find the finest in REAL coconut oil products. Costco’s model is bulk buy, lower price. The next person along the value chain is incentivized to provide the price point…not the quality point. Since most of you have never had fresh-off-the-plantation coconut oil…you won’t notice the difference…and the once nightmare case is returnable.

  143. Jayleen Boyd via Facebook June 23, 2013 at 1:16 pm

    We’ve been loving the organic Nutivia from Costco for a long time now. They’re a VERY conscientious reputable company.

  144. Your articles are great but this is a true hot air piece. On person had a bad experience with a product and you wore way too many Costco-bashing sentences for me to stomach. Why not call Costco or their vendors and try to get a fact before vomiting a bunch of speculation? Please realize you don’t need to give us quantity pieces over quality.

  145. Kristina Campbell Mattson via Facebook June 23, 2013 at 1:23 pm

    This article is unsubstantiated anecdotal evidence passed as fact.

  146. Christa Bateman via Facebook June 23, 2013 at 1:26 pm

    This is pathetic and absurd. Before I went to the check-out I got out my phone and researched the top coconut oil brands, and the one Costco carries is top/middle on the list.

    To suggest saving money by buying at Costco means you are risking quality is as ridiculous as saying that buying any reputable/top brand off amazon to save money means that brand is no longer reputable or “as good” simply because it’s less costly.

    And if you knew a lick about Costco, you would understand how immensly serious they take the brands/quality they offer! Sure, you’ll get your regular Kraft brand, but they also sell certified non-gmo foods as well as most recently organic AAA Canadian beef…. Just because it’s sold at Costco doesn’t mean you are sacrificing ANYTHING!

  147. Sarah Johnston via Facebook June 23, 2013 at 1:34 pm

    Sarah, I really enjoy your blog and have learned SO MUCH from you. With that said, this article really rubbed me the wrong way and I was disappointed like many of the commenters above. First off, my Costco sells Nutiva brand which I find to be a very reputable company, and I love their CO. More importantly though, I find Costco to be a wonderful retailer that is absolutely NOTHING like Walmart or the other “big box” retailers! They sell top quality products, and the reason they can do so for cheap is the fact that they buy entire truckloads rather than cases, their profit per item is very small, and they also charge a membership fee. They are NOT like Walmart. They will also take any product back and issue a full refund if you are unsatisfied for ANY REASON, which is excellent customer service. The woman you described should simply return her oil for a refund and move on. I see your article as borderline slander and an attempt to demonize large chain retailers, while you yourself are trying to sell similar products via your blog. Please don’t take your (understandable) frustration with the system out on Costco, I actually think it’s wonderful that they are branching out and offering more “crunchy” products. Just my 2 cents.

  148. I’ve been using the Costco coconut oil and have been happy- I’ve never had this happen. Do you think it could be the fact that it was in a plastic container, stored in high heat? High heat would also allow microbes to grow. If a few microbial spores got in the container somehow (she is going into the jar to take out oil, right?) they could proliferate. Coconut oil is decent mold food. Also, a “burnt marshmallow smell” indicates to me more of a chemical smell- plastic breaking down in heat?

    Regardless, would it still be safe to use this brand as a lotion, but avoid consumption?

  149. I have Carrington from Costco here in MI and have had no problems and the same is true for my friends who use the same brand as well.
    I realize that the people at Radiant Life are friends of yours, however, if you’re going to post a *warning* about the dangers of cheap oil, why not call to find out more about the term “extra” being used on their label? Why not find out from Carrington if they’re aware of people having problems with their oil? Perhaps the problem lies less with Carrington and more so with that Costco branch. If a jug was opened and then sealed back up it could easily have become contaminated.
    Just a suggestion.

  150. Sarah Meyers via Facebook June 23, 2013 at 1:47 pm

    I totally agree with Sarah Johnston. Also this article was purely speculative. Your quotes to other coconut oil manufacturers said nothing about carrington farms quality directly. In Canada it says virgin only. Some of us have done our research and it wasn’t hard to find the correct info.. I just call your article lazy.

  151. Anietie Natacus Inyang via Facebook June 23, 2013 at 1:49 pm

    Gabriel: You interpreted it right! It’s the other fools that have poor reading comprehension.

  152. Anietie Natacus Inyang via Facebook June 23, 2013 at 1:49 pm

    Gabriel: You interpreted it right! It’s the other fools that have poor reading comprehension.

  153. Shanonn Thompson Hale via Facebook June 23, 2013 at 1:51 pm

    I have been buying carrington coconut oil for a couple years from Costco, two at a time and keep the spare in the garage. No issues whatsoever. Ever. This page is turning into another Mercola site. Scare tactics, snobbery if you don’t eat exactly as she does, and shameless touting of only certain brands (namely ones that reimburse). People have to have options… And most of us are here because we are trying to do the best we can with what we have for our families.

  154. Shanonn Thompson Hale via Facebook June 23, 2013 at 1:51 pm

    I have been buying carrington coconut oil for a couple years from Costco, two at a time and keep the spare in the garage. No issues whatsoever. Ever. This page is turning into another Mercola site. Scare tactics, snobbery if you don’t eat exactly as she does, and shameless touting of only certain brands (namely ones that reimburse). People have to have options… And most of us are here because we are trying to do the best we can with what we have for our families.

  155. I am getting rather sick and tired of some of the elitist food snob attitudes in the real food community.

    Instead of bullying people into thinking they can only eat real food and be healthy if they spend their money on the best high end products, how about we encourage people to take baby steps where they are? Lets help people do the best with what they can afford and have access to where they live.

    I for one think it is a whole lot better for a person of limited means to go to Costco to buy a jar of lesser quality (in your opinion) coconut oil than for them to just give up on ever being healthier because they think they cannot afford the best. As long as this Coscto oil is not adulterated with vegetable oils I believe it is far superior to canola and would be pleased if someone made the switch because they found they could finally afford it thanks to Costco. The people with these “all or nothing” food snob attitudes are why so many people just don’t bother. You put health and nourishment on an unobtainable level for many by insisting anything less than the best will harm you. Shame on those who bring this attitude to the table, YOU do more harm than cheap coconut oil!

    I would like to add that I have the Carrlington oil in my cupboard. I have had it for several months. Some of those months were still heating season months where we had the woodstove going. It was by no means cold in here. My oil has gone from liquid to solid several times. It smells like clean, fresh, coconut oil. There is nothing off about the appearance or smell. It seems to have all the same properties as the Dr Bronners and the Jungle Foods oils I have used in the past. I do not believe that storing your oil in a 100+ degree garage is doing it any favors. I also believe that occasionally a bad batch of something is made. Let the company know, get your money back, decide if you want to try again or buy another brand. No big deal. I bought some sliced apples to eat in the car a few weeks ago. They were great. The next time I bought a bag they tasted moldy. I returned them and contacted the company. No big deal. I am not going to bad mouth the whole brand because I got a bad batch of something.

    I am climbing off my soap box now.

  156. Christine Blank via Facebook June 23, 2013 at 2:26 pm

    I have purchased 3 jars so far of Carrington Farms, all from Costco. I live outside Phoenix, Arizona (HOT) and have stored them in my pantry. Having used the product purchased at different times of the year, having read articles elsewhere on what to look for in a quality virgin coconut oil and having feed back from the company itself (posted elsewhere in this feedback thread) I am most pleased with this product. To be able to get a break on the price through Costco is an added bonus.

  157. Christine Blank via Facebook June 23, 2013 at 2:30 pm

    AND info. that I previously posted was provided by the company through email and at the time of posting was not available online via their website, which is a shame because it answers very valid questions. :)

  158. I agree with the OP 100%. Costco is an exceptional company with high standards for their business and their products. Perhaps someone just got one bad jar of CO. It happens. It’s happened to me at a natural food store where I paid twice as much for a small jar of CO. Kudos to Costco for allowing healthy, organic foods to be available to those of us living on tight budgets with lots of little mouths to feed.

  159. Meg Werr Bane via Facebook June 23, 2013 at 2:43 pm

    We saw the same exact brand at Costco that we’d just paid several more dollars for at the health food store, and it’s not even the brand mentioned in the article. Next time, we will buy it from Costco!

  160. Thanks everyone! I had a feeling that this article was a bit too bias…. I saw it at Costco and told myself I was going to get it there when I ran out and your comments and most of the other comments on this thread have help with my decision. :)

  161. This is the exact jar of coconut oil I bought from Costco, I have had it 5 months, It’s still almost full. I went and got it just now after clicking on your link. I opened it, smelled it, looked at it. It smells delicious like sweet coconut. The color is pure white, a little melty on top since it’s been in the 80′s here. On the jar it says USDA Organic, so I would think they could be sued if they mixed it with any other oils that are not organic. I am thinking Mary’s oil got contaminated somehow. It could have been by someone putting their bare hands or fingers in it, or using a utensil that was not clean. I have been certified in food safety, and it does not take much to contaminate a whole jar of something. I love my jar of coconut oil from Costco. I have other smaller more expensive jars of pure coconut oil that I have bought from health food stores, and they are the same as my costco coconut oil. :D

  162. I agree. I love Costco, and it is nothing like Walmart or Sam’s club. (gross) My mom is on her 3rd jar of the Carrington Farms coconut oil from costco, and has never had a problem. I have a jar, no problem. The lady you are talking about has obviously contaminated her jar somehow. Someone is trying to give Costco a bad name, which is really unfortunate. You cant just take someone’s word and run with it in this kind of circumstance. Too many variables, you cant prove what happened with that coconut.

  163. I agree. I love Costco, and it is nothing like Walmart or Sam’s club. (gross) My mom is on her 3rd jar of the Carrington Farms coconut oil from costco, and has never had a problem. I have a jar, no problem. The lady you are talking about has obviously contaminated her jar somehow. Someone is trying to give Costco a bad name, which is really unfortunate. You cant just take someone’s word and run with it in this kind of circumstance. Too many variables, you cant prove what happened with that coconut.

  164. Kimberly Krisher Metzger via Facebook June 23, 2013 at 3:30 pm

    I have used at least 4 different brands of coconut oil over the last few years and always come back to my favorite- Costco’s organic Nutiva Coconut Oil. Love it.

  165. Kerri Alicia Galea Price via Facebook June 23, 2013 at 3:30 pm

    I buy the nutiva brand. I was buying that brand before. So is that one ok?

  166. I buy Nutiva from Costco and encourage others to do the same because you can’t beat the price.

    Costco’s organic extra virgin olive oil is on the BEST list in the WAPF 2013 buying guide. It’s also the best price around.

    Do your readers know that you get paid from the Village Green Network every time you mention one of your sponsored products? Like coconut oil (or dare I say it Radiant Life, who makes a the WAPF baby formula kit, when that whole breastfeeding controversy was going on?)

    • what is the brand of Costco’s organic extra virgin olive oil? if it is Kirkland, that is listed under Good in the WAPF 2013 Shopping Guide, not under Best.

  167. Lois Holguin via Facebook June 23, 2013 at 3:40 pm

    She’s talking about Carringtons. They are owned by one of the companies that are being boycotted because they put in tons of money to stop the CA GMO initiative. Even at Costco – one of my favorite stores – you have to be careful to know what you are buying. I don’t buy Carringtons – the price is good – but the mfg is not a “health” co. any longer.

  168. I too am getting sick of articles with no real backing. Opinion touted as fact. Unliking. …and I’ll be confidently purchasing my Carrington Farms CO because I did my research before I started buying it and know it’s a great product at a great price.

  169. I agree with several of the other posters in that Sarah’s warnings against big-box retailers like Costco are misplaced. As with any retailer, Costco offers choices between brands and it’s up to the consumer to research and choose reliable brands. The real issue is the reliability of the manufacturer.

  170. Kathy Corvo via Facebook June 23, 2013 at 5:00 pm

    okay lost my whole comment. This happened to me. I first tried Artisana from my co-op to see if I even liked CO because I don’t like coconut. I was okay. But single/low income…can’t afford it. A friend told me about Costco’s and she offered to pick it up. It tasted great. The same. So I had someone get me three more. I opened it and it tasted burned. I had no idea what that meant other than an “off batch” maybe. I finished it yesterday when all this conversation started. I did not eat all the way to the discoloration at the bottom but almost. Opened the second jar that was pure white and …it tastes burned. Drove all over to the co-op, Whole Foods, Trader’s…got another brand from the co-op. Tastes burned. Tried my roommates Garden of Eatin….tastes burned. Trader Joe’s ….tastes burned. So what does this mean? Is it all processed in the same locations? I mean it’s clearly different than my introduction to CO so I don’t know what to think. Is it hurting me? It all tastes this way suddenly…reputable brands and discount. What the heck?

  171. Jen Willett via Facebook June 23, 2013 at 5:12 pm

    Hey @Aniete Natacus Inyang: stop the hatin’. We folks defending the author/blog owner aren’t fools, and we read things just fine, thanks.

    Perhaps you and others need to read this line from her article once more:

    “I’ll admit that I’ve been suspicious of the big box wholesaler brands of coconut oil for quite awhile. The price just didn’t jive with the price I knew to be necessary to ensure a quality, pure product.”

    Notice where she says “the big box wholesaler brands” — as in, their very *own* brands, not…I repeat, *not* national brands such as nutiva. And @Lindsey Snyder Griffiths …wow. That’s downright harsh to say about the author. I doubt she exists on sunshine and paid sponsorships from her sponsors. Please don’t hate. She’s got a good amount of information here, and it’s worthwhile, no matter what.

  172. Trisha Laszlo via Facebook June 23, 2013 at 5:30 pm

    This review lacks in quality. The Healthy Home Economist takes a single persons experience on a product and insinuates all sorts of things that are totally not verifiable. Not cool, not smart. I’ve used Carrington Farms Coconut oil for a year now and the quality seems excellent compared to other more expensive brands. I have had no problems with rancidity. Before insinuating that it’s some sort of poor oil, wouldn’t you want to verify it first?

  173. I don’t think it is fair to be so antagonistic towards the blogger or the people who are supporting her. The article did give the impression in the title as well as the post that buying stuff from Costco is a bad idea. Sorry, but it did. However, that doesn’t mean Sarah needs a verbal thrashing.

  174. Joseph Mendiola via Facebook June 23, 2013 at 5:36 pm

    You can almost always count of businessmen fooling you by saying things that are ONLY partly true. Its the nature of the beast. Lies are way cheap in the human world. Its UNIVERSAL.

  175. Joseph Mendiola via Facebook June 23, 2013 at 5:36 pm

    You can almost always count of businessmen fooling you by saying things that are ONLY partly true. Its the nature of the beast. Lies are way cheap in the human world. Its UNIVERSAL.

  176. Theresa LeMire via Facebook June 23, 2013 at 5:49 pm

    my cat will have nothing to do with Costco coconut oil (thought I’d give it a try) but begs me everyday for my usual brand from “Quality First International Inc”. He loves it! I trust his instincts more than the word of these big companies. I will stick to what we both like best.

  177. Lindsey Snyder Griffiths via Facebook June 23, 2013 at 5:58 pm

    @jen Willet, not hating. Just tired of blatant advertisements, especially since her beloved brand had the same labeling. Her blog, her business.

  178. Christine Blank via Facebook June 23, 2013 at 7:04 pm

    I have been following this blog since yesterday morning when I received it as an email. Somewhere along the line someone posted (comments) an address for an OUTSTANDING site about how to choose a coconut oil. I’ve looked this up and am most impressed. The information is presented in a very intelligent, thoughtful way. She’s done her homework, so to speak, if she hasn’t experienced what she is reviewing herself she’s taken many other folks views and opinions, contacted various companies and compiled the info in a very organized fashion. She provides links to aid in self-searches. I’m passing this link along. I’ll be following this blogger, I like her style. http://www.evolvingwellness.com/essay/how-to-choose-a-coconut-oil-comparing-best-and-worst-brands So, to whomever posted this previously, THANK YOU :)

    • I wonder why she (evolvingwellness.com) does not recommend the white label expeller pressed oil from Tropical Traditions. I am shocked.
      That is what Sarah, the healthy home economist purchase in a 5 gallon bucket isn’t it?
      I also purchased it after reading Sarah’s article.

      Carrington Farms Coconut Oil — Recommended
      -Tropical Traditions Organic, Virgin Coconut Oil
      â—¦Black Label Organic, Virgin – Recommended
      â—¦Green Label Organic, Virgin – Recommended
      â—¦White Label Expeller Pressed Organic Certified and Non-Certified – Not Recommended

  179. Garney Barnes via Facebook June 23, 2013 at 7:06 pm

    I am well aware of desert & southern living & bush meaning Australia……. Jen Willett.. But come on… 1/2 brain knows not to store in those conditions.. And to post/slam any other brand due to ignoramus thinking. And promote ur own? It’s slander..

  180. You have Costco in the headline inflaming your audience but not a single study, investigation or shread of proof about the coconut oil. If you are going to rip a product apart please provide proof it is bad. To some of us, what you consider subpar may be all we can afford. I certainly can’t buy all those to shelf vitamins & supplements I know you do. I am buying for a family of 7 on an income barely over minimum wage. Please don’t treat us like we are horrible for having to buy less then your perfectly ideal products.

  181. Diane Kubisiak LaLonde via Facebook June 23, 2013 at 8:25 pm

    I muscle tested for Costco brand Coconut Oil, and did Not test well for it….not sure what the difference is compared to the Nutivia brand we always buy….

  182. Wouldn’t shop at costco if you paid me. I like to support Australian business, Australian workers, I always buy Australian made where possible (coconut oil not produced here) with the money staying in Australia. There are few enough jobs out there now for our teenagers. Keep buying imports from big overseas companies like this one and soon there will be none

  183. Tracy Martin Emerson via Facebook June 23, 2013 at 11:59 pm

    I would like to see results from a test proving that this isn’t pure coconut oil, not just a suspicion…not enough proof here to sway me away. Everything that I have gotten at Costco is top notch.

  184. Cheryl Ann via Facebook June 24, 2013 at 7:26 am

    I have this coconut oil in my home right now, as well as Tropical Traditions Gold Label Virgin Coconut Oil….One of the reasons I purchase from Costco is that I trust their brands and find it hard to believe they would sell an inferior product. There is a documentary on Costo that is is pretty interesting as far as how they research and require changes sometimes to improve a product before they will sell it in their store….I just don’t believe Costco would damage their reputation by putting garbage on their shelves…Especially something like coconut oil which probably has a pretty low profit margin…

  185. Sara James via Facebook June 24, 2013 at 7:44 am

    Due to many comments that caught my attention about the good quality available at the store, I’ve now decided to get a Costco membership after years of not having one and buy coconut oil there. Thanks y’all! Oh yes, and from what I’ve read, the employees are treated pretty well compared to other stores that are unfortunately often roped into the same category- Walmart, eh hmm.

  186. Sara James via Facebook June 24, 2013 at 7:44 am

    Due to many comments that caught my attention about the good quality available at the store, I’ve now decided to get a Costco membership after years of not having one and buy coconut oil there. Thanks y’all! Oh yes, and from what I’ve read, the employees are treated pretty well compared to other stores that are unfortunately often roped into the same category- Walmart, eh hmm.

  187. Erin Boyd via Facebook June 24, 2013 at 8:24 am

    @Sara James , be sure to also get some Kerry Gold Butter,organic baby spinach, and even organic apple slices when you get your membership! Costco is a great place and the demand is there for better food, they are one of the few stores smart enough to realize it and bring in all these awesome products that are affordable for all of us on a budget.

  188. I really enjoy your blog and learn a lot from it. I normally find your posts informative and research-based. However, I was very disappointed in this post and I think you dropped the ball. You have included a photo and a fairly serious criticism with absolutely no research. This seems very unfair to me. You have not contacted the company to ask them about their practices, nor have you included any actual information about this product aside from one anecdotal comment upon which you’ve based a huge generalization.

    I am a mom of 8 children and my husband and I live on one income. Healthy eating is of the utmost importance to us. We work hard to choose the very best food we can afford and I certainly understand that quality food costs money. However, we simply must make some compromises or we could not afford to live. Already, our grocery budget is about 20% of our income. For us, buying coconut oil at Costco does not represent a choice between buying it at Costco or Wildnerness Naturals. It is a choice between buying it at Costco or not buying it at all. If you have findings that would indicate this is not a product worth buying at all, I would be very open to reading about that. However, this article lacks the factual information with your usual excellent commentary that I am looking for.

    We’ve loved the coconut oil from Costco. It has been nice to have virgin coconut oil again since we hadn’t been able to afford it for awhile.

  189. Angelcraft Soap June 24, 2013 at 9:31 am

    Pam,
    The Carrington Farms CO at Costco is anything but cheap. It retails for about 30 cents per ounce which is more than double the price I pay through a well-known supplier of soap supplies. I can get LouAna (at WalMart or local supermarket) for about 19 cents per ounce.

    In a pinch, I picked up 4 jars of the Carrington Farms CO at Costco. It smelled great, and it felt great, and it soaped great. The ONE thing I noticed immediately, however, is that I was able to “pour” it from the jar rather than having to spoon it out of the jar which was unusual considering it was the middle of winter.

    Additionally, I never store any soap making supplies (other than packaging and displays) in the garage. I much prefer to keep them (especially oils) in an area that is climate controlled.

  190. Jennifer Noel via Facebook June 24, 2013 at 9:38 am

    I buy mine at trader joes when its on sale. I stock up. If it smelled it was not 100 percent coconut oil. Sorry. No way around it. Costco is great but sometimes things r overlooked.

  191. … On another side note… not everything from Costco IS top notch any longer. I recently ordered about 5 expensive pool lounge chairs from Costco and each one came with cuts into the vinyl. I took each one back to my local store (which really got old!) I finally found the very same brand of chair at Tuesday Morning in perfect condition and bought the 2 I needed there. Then I bought a pool “board” for the kids to play on and BEFORE it was used (opened the plastic and put it by the pool to use) it formed a giant “bubble” on top and had to be returned (within a day). They do take things back and USUALLY without question but it gets old to return these inferior products that seem to be cropping up more and more often. I also had to return a bag of scallops which were NASTY!! Fishy-tasting and not fresh at all. :(

    I do love the Kerrygold butter and ORganic coffee!!

  192. For whatever it is worth: I normally buy coconut oil from Tropical Traditions – different grades for different application – in the 5 gal. buckets. The first gold label (highest quality) bucket I bought was horrible smelling. I tried hiding it in food – no good. I tried using it on my skin mixed with essential oils to help the smell – no good. After contacting the company TWICE I finally had a reply and they very kindly made the situation right by sending another bucket at their cost. The problem was resolved satisfactorily. I have bought from them since, but am not always convinced the co is as fresh smelling as perhaps it should be….but then again, I am not a coconut oil expert by any means.

    A friend had some of the Carrington Farms brand oil pictured in the original post and I tried it at her house. Delicious and fresh, tasting of nothing but yummy coconut. So, I asked her to pick up a jar of it for me when she went again. I am still using both brands, but for this moment, at least, the Carrington Farms brand is much better tasting.

    I don’t believe Tropical Traditions sells bad products intentionally and they did fix the issue. I just thought it was interesting that my experience in this one instance was, generally,the opposite of what is being discussed here.

  193. I talked with Debbie at Carrington Farms this morning (800-505-9546) and she said that your comments were unfounded and that you never talked with her before publishing your blog about them and Costco. She talked with Costco and said that they are also “very concerned” about your comments. Debbie assured me that the coconuts are organically grown and they do not blend in other oils and the oil is filtered several times throughout the process. She said that the coconuts are processed within 4 days of being picked and the oil is “cold expeller pressed” to preserve the integrity of the product. At each step of the process, the oil is inspected and certified. They are certified with every certification that coconut oil can have. Additionally, they meet all government requirements and standards for their products. Furthermore, Costco audits every step of the process, from inspecting the groves in which the coconuts are grown, through the extraction and handling process, to the packaging, right to the store shelf. She told me that they can sell the coconut oil at a lower price at Costco because they will buy 60 truck loads at a time. She said that you can find their products at health food stores and other retailers at almost twice the price because smaller retailers can only buy small quantities. Personally, I have used Carrington Farms coconut oil with no problem, I previously used Nutiva and notice no difference between the two, including the “extra virgin” claim on the label. Sarah, I have followed your blog for awhile now and have appreciated your insights. I think you “stepped in it” on this one, though. You might want to contact Debbie and maybe even Costco and let your followers know the facts. Thanks for all the useful info you provide!

  194. I would also like to add that Costco may be a “big box store”, but they should not be lumped in with Walmart. They have very good practices in terms of how they treat employees (the polar opposite of Walmart), and they also tend to carry a lot of quality products. We’re intelligent enough to steer clear of the lesser quality products that they do carry.

  195. I recalling reading that some coconut oil may contain mold and mycotoxins. I heard Dave Asprey, the Bulletproof guy, mention it in a video.

    I quickly googled and found this:

    …”One food that is not mentioned on the list is coconut oil. I want to point out that, while coconut oil is an
    incredible food in terms of nutrition and taste, many coconut oils contain mycotoxins. This is because
    they are commonly made with copras, or dried coconuts, which are often contaminated with mycotoxins.
    So in order to fully enjoy the benefits of this coconut oil, you will want to be sure that you find a company
    that uses only fresh coconuts to make their oil, like the Tropical Traditions virgin coconut oil on this site…”

    http://www.vsan.org/pdf/Top-10-myco-toxic-foods.pdf

    And in this video, it’s mentioned briefly: http://www.bulletproofexec.com/bulletproof-video-get-stable-energy-perform-better-by-avoiding-these/

    That is a good video to watch about the whole mycotoxin issue anyway, in addition to the coconut oil discussion.

    I have been getting my coconut oil from Trader Joe’s. It’s reasonably priced and easy to get. I do have some concerns about using this, but there are limits to how much I can spend. I can’t always buy the top top quality of every item. Always something…

    One more link about mycotoxins: http://paleohacks.com/questions/117067/have-you-been-mycotoxined-mold-yeast-effects

  196. I wouldn’t store any oil in a plastic container, let alone in a place that was going to get that hot. Even the good oil I get from Wilderness family I transfer to jars. Its probably why the oil would go bad. Leaching from the plastic

  197. Christine Blank via Facebook June 24, 2013 at 3:21 pm

    “There are two different kinds of coconut oil: refined and unrefined. Refined is normally considered regular and it has virtually no coconut taste or aroma. Unrefined is normally considered virgin or extra virgin and it possesses a fresh coconut taste and aroma.

    For the most health benefits coconut oil should be purchased in the unrefined or extra virgin form. It is even more beneficial to choose a variety that is organic and raw. Refined coconut oils can be treated with various chemicals, and processed with very high heat, thereby compromising the health benefits of this product.

    Refined oils are cheaper, but the unrefined are worth the extra price.” info taken from Evolving Wellness

  198. Kimberly Heaps via Facebook June 24, 2013 at 5:46 pm

    I have been purchasing and using coconut oil for about 5 years. Earlier in 2013 my local costco started selling This Carrington Farms brand. I usually by in bulk over the internet so regardless that I was “stocked” I purchased a 54oz jug for I think 15.99 which was a considerable savings for me. Now I have purchased many different brands until settling on my previous fav. because of it’s light fluffy and fresh texture. Well the Carrington Farms taste and texture surpassed my favorite. I was so grateful for Costco bringing this to me at such a great price. So today when I read this post, I went to my cupboard and pulled my only open jar which is down to just the bottom 1/2 inch left. I smelled it again and tasted it which I get to do regularly as I use it for Oil pulling as well…and it was still great. But to be sure I called the 800 number on the container and asked for any response they might have because I have referred this oil to many of my friends and friends of friends because I just love it and I wanted to be confident that it was what it seems to be to me and that is 100% cold pressed coconut oil that is one of the freshest and best tasteing I have enjoyed. …I was 100% reassured as I was walked kindly and thoughtfully walked through the process from procurment to my table. ….I appreciate most of the posts from the healthyhomeeconomist and I get some really good information most of the time. But it is my respectful opinion that whatever happened to MaryM’s coconut oil was not what my experience is. Perhaps she used a dirty spoon…perhaps any number of things of which I will never know. But please if Costco reads this …DO NOT STOP SELLING CARRINGTON FARMS COCONUT OIL….IT IS WONDERFUL AND I LOVE IT AND COSTCO….

    • @ Kimberly, Wow, that’s a better price than my local Costco LOL Our Costco is currently selling Nutiva but I have 2 jars of Carrington Farms (Costco) on the pantry self as well as one jar of Nutiva (which I haven’t tried yet). I too appreciate the quality of product and service from Carrington Farms and Costco. YES, if Costco is reading this blog, and we know Carrington Farms has…please continue to bring us these lovely, wholesome products and great customer service.

  199. I contacted Carrington Farms. This is a portion of the email she sent me. I hope it will put some concerns to rest:

    would like to let you know a bit about ours. I have attached an FAQ that answers many of our most common questions. We are able to offer the price to Costco that you see due the economies of scale. They buy upwards to 60 truckloads of coconut oil per month so we are able to ship and manufacture economically. However, our same brand sells for a much higher price in a local health food store since it is much more expensive per jar to ship them a case of 6 then per jar on a truckload. In all our research there seems to be no difference between ‘Virgin’ and ‘Extra Virgin’. Our Canadian label says Virgin as that is the rule for labeling there, in the US we use Extra Virgin on the label. The coconut oil is the same. There are no other oils, or ANYTHING, added to our pure expeller cold pressed coconut oil. We use only raw fresh coconut meat taken from Organic coconuts and press it in the Philippines

  200. While I too have wondered about the reasonably priced coconut oil I’ve purchased at Costco, I’ve had nothing but good smelling/tasting oil. I also know that Costco has fairly stringent standards. It does come in a PLASTIC CONTAINER however, and I think this mixed with high heat is a bad combination. This brings me to my next question, which is, why would anyone store something like this in a area of such known high heat like a garage?

  201. Arien Deng via Facebook June 25, 2013 at 1:49 am

    I LOVE their prices on Wild Planet’s sardines, the same thing cost so much more at a health food store or even Amazon.

  202. I live in NC, buy the Carrington Farms from Costco and have never had a problem. This time of year the oil is always completely liquid due to high temps. No issues. On a side note I really love Costco, and will continue to shop there. I find many quality products there.

  203. I am glad that I now know to look for flakes on the bottom of the container with any oil no matter what brand. So thank you for that. However, I did notice that your two outside sources were “friends”, so they were not totally objectable sources. “You get what you pay for” is NOT always true. For example- there are many high priced organic processed foods that are less healthy and poorer quality than some conventional non-processed foods. Also, I know I have bought many a high priced item that ended up performing worse than cheaper items I bought. My opinion- from reading all the upset comments on this post- in the future maybe you should focus your articles on what to look for in products of quality instead of dogging other brands. If you titled this article “What to look for in a coconut oil brand” instead of “Why Buying Coconut Oil at Costco is Risky Business”, this article would receive more credit. I know I am not a blogger, but have been an avid reader of yours for a while and I think it is important to give my opinion. Thank you.

  204. Brittany Hughes Ardito via Facebook June 25, 2013 at 11:04 am

    It is important to note that the 2 outside sources are “friends” of Sarah’s. I usually like your articles, but this one seems to have the agenda of selling your sponsor’s/friend’s products.

  205. Coconut Oil is an amazing product and I happen to love using Nutiva Coconut Oil. I spoke to one of Nutiva’s helpful staff members about the issue of quality in Coconut Oil across brands. As some of you may know Nutiva is a pioneer in organic coconut oil for the past decade. The Nutiva guy did say they are starting to see some brands blending other oils and or refined oil due to shortages of Coconut Oil. And he indicated that some of the largest supplier in the Philippines were contacted by re-marketers in the US and by the questions asked they could tell were exploring how you could try to conceal this. So be careful on which brands you choose. Nutiva or Tropical Traditions are long time quality suppliers who are tied into the farmers and producers of Coconut Oil. Coconut Oil is becoming a huge industry and some people will do a lot for a buck.

  206. Jesse Baker via Facebook June 25, 2013 at 11:54 am

    Are you aware that Tropical Traditions has free shipping a lot of the time? I buy five gallon jugs from them when they offer free shipping. It makes for some good priced, high quality coconut oil.

  207. Jesse Baker via Facebook June 25, 2013 at 11:54 am

    Are you aware that Tropical Traditions has free shipping a lot of the time? I buy five gallon jugs from them when they offer free shipping. It makes for some good priced, high quality coconut oil.

  208. Jesse Baker via Facebook June 25, 2013 at 11:54 am

    Are you aware that Tropical Traditions has free shipping a lot of the time? I buy five gallon jugs from them when they offer free shipping. It makes for some good priced, high quality coconut oil.

  209. Sarah, I am very confused here. I came across your article on coconut oil also. Carrington Farms is of the highest quality and you said they were suspect because they had extra virgin written on their label, but the company you recommended also has that written on their label? You’re selling that one right? Also, Costco doesn’t sell inferior product in fact they were one of only several Extra Virgin Olive Oil’s that actually got very high ratings for being pure. I have a friend who sells her product to Costco and I know for a fact she only uses the best ingredients in jelly. Costco sells at lower prices because of their buying power not because of inferior goods. I have to agree with Erin Boyd.

  210. Sarah, I am very confused here. I came across your article on coconut oil also. Carrington Farms is of the highest quality and you said they were suspect because they had extra virgin written on their label, but the company you recommended also has that written on their label? You’re selling that one right? Also, Costco doesn’t sell inferior product in fact they were one of only several Extra Virgin Olive Oil’s that actually got very high ratings for being pure. I have a friend who sells her product to Costco and I know for a fact she only uses the best ingredients in jelly. Costco sells at lower prices because of their buying power not because of inferior goods. I have to agree with Erin Boyd.

  211. Well, I have to say I have used this brand and I had an experience with it turning yellow and rancid as it got closer to the bottom. I bought more and didn’t have the same problem, so maybe it was just a bad batch? I kind of questioned it myself because it is so much cheaper than other brands out there right now, so I sent a message to the company asking about their Fair Trade practices. They couldn’t really give me much info other than to say the following: “Our coconut oil originates from the Philippines. All of our coconuts come from organic certified farms and are processed within roughly four hours of picking them. While we are not fair trade certified, we have social audits done to assure the farms and processor are socially responsible. Thanks for the question!” Not sure how they define *social audits* but to me that leaves a lot up to interpretation and could be the reason for the cheaper cost. Just my .02!

  212. It’s a bit disturbing to me that Sarah has not retracted her original comments or at least modified them, acknowledging that she perhaps overreacted and failed to do appropriate research before posting what is only a personal opinion. In fact, this has bothered me since originally reading this post last week and has caused me to wonder what else I’ve read by her that was written based on opinion only without any facts.

    • I’ve been thinking the same thing, Pamela. She hasn’t said a word since people started calling her on it. Admit you made a mistake and people can forgive, but is she really standing by this nonsense?

    • I have never seen Sarah correct a mistake or even acknowledge there is one. She just goes on to the next post and ignores the fallout. Unfortunate.

      • Same here, seen her make a few mistakes and never admit it or never set the record straight. I don’t even use this coconut oil but if she doesn’t correct this situation and address it, I’m unsubscribing from her. If she can’t be viewed as reliable and honest, what’s the point?

          • You didn’t give an opinion. You made dogmatic statements and they were not correct. Too many people accept what you say without question for you to let this go. You maligned a great company with quality products and a good oil produced with high standards. Your opinion can’t be mistaken?

          • Sarah, The Healthy Home Economist
            Sarah, The Healthy Home Economist July 4, 2013 at 7:45 am

            I am sorry if you interpreted this post that way. It was not written in that frame of mind. I am not going to change my opinion just because it makes some folks upset. If this post has caused a few people to stop buying coconut oil at Costco, WalMart and other places and to support small businesses instead, for that I am very glad :)

          • I think it’s more likely to have informed people that they can save the cost of their Cosco membership just by getting their coconut oil there. It’s hard for a family on a fixed income to justify to upfront cost (like $60 or w/e) but if that can be saved in buying “high quality” (as shown by other more well informed posters) Carrington or Nutiva coconut oils then we can pretty much all afford it :)

          • Sarah, The Healthy Home Economist
            Sarah, The Healthy Home Economist July 4, 2013 at 3:26 pm

            Yes, I understand this. However, a few years back when my family was on a poverty level income for quite sometime we never bought at big box retailers. We reprioritized our budget, bought small and local if and whereever possible and always found a way to buy the best food and never settled for cheap that might have questionable quality so I know it can be done.

          • That’s great that you could manage that. But not everyone lives in Florida where there is an abundance of good local food available year round. There are several foods that are never available locally here, and even the ones that are, are only available for a short time. Our family shops mainly locally during season (and raise what food we can), but the rest of the year it is very helpful that Costco carries some of the things we need, (we also order through Azure Standard). And at least when we do shop there, we know that the employees (local folks, by the way, who need a pay check) are treated well and are happy with their job (you know they’re happy with their job when they’ve been working there for years). We also know which items are high quality and which are not (most of them are high quality, btw). And some of us have high expenses in other areas of our lives, and can’t cut those (such as medical expenses – not all medical expenses can be cut by eating well).

          • Sarah, The Healthy Home Economist
            Sarah, The Healthy Home Economist July 4, 2013 at 8:22 pm

            Actually, that is not really true. Believe it or not, the summers get way too hot and buggy for much if any local produce.

          • Well, even if there aren’t things growing in the summer, you obviously live an area different from ours. I can guarantee you that no one in this area could do that in this area where we live. It is not good to criticize others for the doing the best they can, and to use your experience (the experience of one family in one area) as proof that they are not trying hard enough. Yes, you did it, but that was in your circumstances, not theirs.

  213. Hi Sarah,
    after reading about Olive oil, now I’m wondering what are the better brands to use in
    cooking, eating in general..thank you.

  214. My local Costco sells the Nutivia brand of coconut oil, and I’ve always been pleased with the quality.

  215. I gave up after 100 comments.
    stop being sheep, do your own research and make up your own minds.Sharing info is good -yes- but stop criticising the woman and her blog, write your own blog if you do not agree, not agreeing is fine , but stop being sheep – find the info you seek and decide.

  216. and to the point here- I use Carrington farms, Nutiva(extra virgin…) and many other organic brands.Some I prefer more than others.Carrington farms has proved to be reliable and fresh and has served me well as I use it for body- and food.I enjoy the savings too as coconut oil is very pricey and I have 2 kids .It is possible that the chick had a bad jar.Simple.I would not go as far as sounding like an elitist organic foodie and put down an entire company and the people who shop there….but hey that is me and I am not going to take it personally.I know what I want and need .

  217. Pingback: 35 Days of Favorites: Coconut Oil and Oregano Oil | Ordinary Days

    • Asking for accuracy and admission of error is not being nasty. She slandered a reputable company and oil with no basis whatsoever.

      I support her too and love her blog but I don’t support that post.

      • Sarah, The Healthy Home Economist
        Sarah, The Healthy Home Economist July 4, 2013 at 7:46 am

        I would be very worried if my readers agreed with me on every single post! That would make for an extremely boring blog that wasn’t doing much to help folks navigate the maze of food options available today :)

  218. Brenda Boran via Facebook July 3, 2013 at 7:41 pm

    I use that coconut oil and love it! What’s so wrong about it and if it’s so bad, can somebody please buy me the right stuff because this is what I can afford. ;)

    • There is NOTHING wrong with this coconut oil. I used to buy Tropical Traditions Gold Label coconut oil and came across Carrington farms at Costco. It is a great quality coconut oil, and tastes delicious, too. I am not above using it.

  219. Linda Nash McNary via Facebook July 3, 2013 at 7:42 pm

    Just keep up the good work. Some of us are smart enough to do our own research if we need to.

  220. Linda Nash McNary via Facebook July 3, 2013 at 7:43 pm

    I deleted some friends off of facebook this week because they wanted to fight me about my opinions. I’m not going to fight them I just delete them…lol

  221. Antoinette Dick via Facebook July 3, 2013 at 7:44 pm

    Share your posts and to hang with them! I enjoy you! You can please some people some of the time, but not all people all of the time!

  222. Rhiannon Melton via Facebook July 3, 2013 at 7:44 pm

    Other bloggers attack when they want attention brought to their blog. They are just sitting at home with too much time on their hands.

  223. Sheryl Venables via Facebook July 3, 2013 at 7:44 pm

    I support you sarah! Thanks for everything you do. You are very inspiring. :D

  224. Kathy Goodrich July 3, 2013 at 8:13 pm

    It’s rather interesting that I was just at Costco the other day and saw the Coconut Oil and thought about purchasing it. I held off this time but will probably try it. My thought is that sometimes things go bad depending on the conditions. I personally wouldn’t leave something in the garage that gets that hot and expect it to last. Just my thought!! Happy decision making everyone!!

  225. i noticed some negative stuff from other bloggers, left a bad taste in my mouth, some of them i follow and i was surprised. there is nothing wrong with writing on your own blog about your own opinions. sheesh! i think some people are offended just because they are costco die-hards. anyway, great blog, i think i’ve read every word of it by now.

  226. This is a blog people, not a scientific report. A woman, who cares about her health and cooks got a blog and you’re all treating it as if she has some responsibility as a journalist. She doesn’t! It’s YOUR responsibility to look into things and do research. She can write any damn thing she pleases and owes nothing to any of you. Please be smart enough to know what a blog is and how to use one. This should not be your go-to source for information regarding something as important as your health. Go get a blog, it take 10 minutes and they won’t send you away for being a dolt.

      • Sarah, The Healthy Home Economist
        Sarah, The Healthy Home Economist July 4, 2013 at 7:50 am

        How is what I wrote inaccurate? I posted the actual experience of a lady with a jar of bad coconut oil that should have been fine even in a plastic tub in 100F heat (this was corroborated by other readers as well .. it wasn’t just one person’s experience). I posted the feedback of 2 owners of reputable coconut oil companies as to why the coconut oil might have gone rancid. How is this in any way inaccurate? I came to a conclusion about the situation that is different from yours, but that doesn’t make me wrong – just not in agreement with your conclusions.

        • You absolutely made claims about several companies that you clearly know little about – all based on a number of erroneous assumptions. How you fail to see that as inaccurate is beyond me. That takes a lot of hubris. The vast majority of the rest of us came to a different conclusion than you because we’re more interested in truth and fairness to all parties than advancing our agenda. As someone who’s very committed to shopping small businesses and local products on a chiropractic students budget, I know not to let the perfect be the enemy of the good. Costco isn’t a “sacred cow” (which by the way is so condescending) just because some value it as an option they couldn’t otherwise afford. This is only one of many times your post has been inflammatory and lacking in common sense. People new to this real food movement will read this nonsense as truth because they think you’re some kind of authority. I find that so unfortunate.

      • She has to defend the accuracy of her opinion? It’s a BLOG! How on earth can you be so wrapped up in the words of someone who’s credentials are… what exactly? Do you even know? This is your health, not the purchase of an appliance.(although, I have to say I feel like I have spent more time researching a new blender than you folks seem to have spent on researching your health. Do yourself a favor and spend some time doing research instead of surfing pinterest for info on something as important as your wellbeing.
        I’m embarrassed for all of you, acting like a bunch of uninformed sheep. Step away from the keyboard, and get a grip on reality. Too much candy crush dilutes the brain cels.

  227. Hi. Just reading this post and I just wanted to say that I use Artisana coconut oil. I get it at the co-op, it always smell like delicious coconut oil. It’s not cheap. It’s about $13 for a 15oz jar. The label says Raw 100% Organic Coconut Oil and in the corner it says, “Extra Virgin.” The ingredients list says-Organic Raw Extra Virgin Coconut Oil as well.

    In doing my research, I’ve discovered that there are no industry standard definitions for “extra virgin” like there are for olive oil. It is simply a way for the manufacturer to say something about the quality of the product.

    Tropical Traditions, another good brand of coconut oil, has this wonderful description of coconut oil processing on their website, along with information about the virgin vs. extra virgin debate and what it really means. I found it to be a great and well informed read. I’m adding it here if anyone is interested.

    http://www.tropicaltraditions.com/what_is_virgin_coconut_oil.htm

    I can’t say anything about the brand at Costco but I do believe we can all have our opinions. I don’t believe that all brands marketing their coconut oil as extra virgin is trying to scam the customer or lie. If the product looks good, smells good, and tastes good, comes in a glass jar, and costs a pretty penny and says “extra virgin” and you didn’t buy it out of the back of someone’s truck, the manufacturer is probably just saying, “Hey, this is good stuff!” Still, always do your research. I can’t say for sure, but off the top of my head, all the coconut oils that I’ve seen in the coop that are raw, unrefined, organic etc. have said virgin or extra virgin. I know there are comparable brands of coconut oil at other stores as well.

    Anyhow, there’s my two cents. Hope this helps somebody! Artisana is really yummy. I eat it with a spoon out of the jar!!

  228. I am so glad that somebody took the time to research this product, since I in fact had not. We purchase it regularly and have given it to loved ones as gifts (to introduce them to healthier fats). I have been pleased with the taste, quality and price of this product in comparison to other coconut oils we’ve purchased. I will continue purchasing the Carrington Farms coconut oil from Costco with the knowledge it is a great product. Thank you for stirring the pot on this topic so customers can learn the truth.

  229. Much of the angst this post caused is because of the categorically negative and untrue statements made about a great company and a wonderful oil. It would also be nice if she admits she was wrong to do it. She’s been in error other times and she never acknowledges it.

    Yes, she has a right her opinion on her blog, but she also has a responsibility to those she disseminates information to on the blog. It is always a good thing to backtrack if you make a mistake and she made a few here. She stated untruths and when corrected did not retract them.

    I value her blog and will continue to read, but I wish she would be gracious enough to admit mistakes when they are made.

    As for the nasty comments about the wonderful post written by a blogger correcting some of these errors – shame on you who made them. She did what was right and gave out accurate information.

    • Sarah, The Healthy Home Economist
      Sarah, The Healthy Home Economist July 4, 2013 at 7:55 am

      Granted, Costco is obviously a sacred cow to some folks who shop there. I don’t personally choose to shop there or other big box retailers as I see them as part of the problem of unsustainability in this country. Some have a different view and I respect that.

  230. Sarah, I love your blog and so do many of my friends. I will keep reading and learning. But I wish you would acknowledge errors when you make them as do most other bloggers. And several were made in this post.

    • Sarah, The Healthy Home Economist
      Sarah, The Healthy Home Economist July 4, 2013 at 7:42 am

      Hi Denise, if you disagree with my take on coconut oil at Costco, that is fine. But, it doesn’t make my opinion on the matter wrong – just different from yours. I continue to to suspicious of the cheap products that big box retailers like Costco flood the market with (harming small businesses in the process) and I will not patronize them.

  231. Where is the research or conversations with Carrington Farms? It seems like you just slammed them because they provide for a big box retailer. I buy this oil and have never had an issue and have always been pleased with their product. They’re able to provide low prices because of the quantity. Shopping small local business is always great, but not always feasible. It doesn’t make other oils bad if they don’t come from small businesses.

  232. I am mystified why Costco is equated with cheap, inferior, questionable, etc. products. Have you ever researched their stringent quality checks? They are able to sell so inexpensively because they limit the number of choices . . . 2 brands of coconut oil available in just one size versus 5 different products available in multiple sizes at other retailers.

    Do you know that they pay a VERY generous wage plus benefits even though they’ve been advised that they can make MUCH MORE profit by screwing their employees? They refuse to do it. My friend works there as a cashier and STARTED at more than $11.00/hour.

    You are obviously about “truth” and I love that! You’ve noted that it is your opinion, but PLEASE I would ask that you remove the post because I’m sure you would ask another blogger remove theirs if what they posted turns out, even inadvertently, to be untrue. Costco is a good, moral, generous company and it’s been shown DEFINITIVELY that their Carrington Farm Coconut Oil is a good product.

    Thanks

    • Sarah, The Healthy Home Economist
      Sarah, The Healthy Home Economist July 5, 2013 at 10:15 am

      The reason is because Costco is able to buy large quantities of items and therefore negotiate cheap prices that smaller businesses cannot. In an effort to fill these very large orders, quality is a casualty .. not always but it is risky to buy your nutrient dense foods there .. particularly fats which is the most important part of the diet. My degree is Economics and I have studied and understand how these corporations work. I do not recommend that people buy foods critical to their health at establishments like Costco. If you disagree with me, I respect your opinion.

  233. I was a little bothered about the post and I don’t even use that brand of coconut oil (I use Garden of Life). I think it’s because you stated things as facts and not as your opinion. Like when you said, “…but one thing is for sure. It was not fresh, high quality Grade A coconut oil.” You can’t really say something is for sure if you haven’t gone and checked it out yourself.

    Then you say, “…the only way to ensure a quality product is to buy from a quality small business, not a big box retailer like Costco that buys large amounts of inventory from manufacturers and dumps it on the consumer market at ultra cheap prices.”

    But you’ve said Nutiva is a good brand.. and they sell their oil at Costco for a decent price. I also can get Nutiva at a local health food store at a pretty decent price (only the big size, though). So are they a good brand or not? You’ve said so, but then you’re kind of saying they’re not because if it’s at Costco, it’s apparently bad. And also because they use the word extra virgin, that probably makes them bad, too. I think your readers might be feeling betrayed because it seems like you are pushing your sponsor and friend’s coconut oil and saying it’s the best. Personally, I don’t know anything about that coconut oil, but from the oils I’ve tried, I find GOL to be the best. I think readers just want opinions without feeling like they are being pushed on something you’re trying to sell.

  234. I’ve been using Carrington coconut oil for a year and I think it’s a great product! Can’t say enough good things about Costco, either.

    Something to consider: Food, even food that should last a long time or “forever” should never, ever be stored in hot or humid conditions. Storing food in a garage is a terrible idea and will cause even the purest of foods to deteriorate. Basements are best. Or, if in a place that doesn’t have basements, an indoor pantry/cabinet.

  235. Sarah, you say you had two red flags: oil going bad in a hot environment and using the term “extra virgin” for coconut oil. To me, its a “red flag” that someone was keeping their oil in a hot environment! My coconut oil, as a vital healthy fat, is guarded and protected; therefore, I store it as directed. As far as your second red flag, since the US has such poor labeling laws, why is it a red flag? I’ve known for some time that “extra virgin” doesn’t exist for coconut oil, yet most of the top brands label them as such. What really matters is what goes in the product; that being said, Carrington Farms is a good quality product that people can trust. You slandered a product without any apparent research, experience, etc., and made untrue claims about Costco as well. In these comments, people have pointed out your inconsistencies, lack of research, and your apparent bias towards your friends/affiliates coconut oil, yet you have not made any changes, retractions, editing, etc.; now you claim its just your “opinion” in the comments section which a lot of people will never get to. Most of your readers look to you as an expert and they want to hear your advice, but you really missed the mark with this one. Please change your writing style and wording to better communicate that this is only your “opinion”. Personally, I’m very disappointed in this post. You’ve lost a good bit of credibility in my eyes.

    • Sarah, The Healthy Home Economist
      Sarah, The Healthy Home Economist July 9, 2013 at 10:35 pm

      Sorry you feel that way Linda. I’ve stored quality coconut oil in my 115F garage for years and it has never gone bad provided I bought it from a reputable small company that didn’t supply large amounts of inventory at a cut rate price to a retailer like Costco.

      Coconut oil when properly filtered is a very stable oil and can easily withstand a hot pantry or garage (this is why it is safe to cook with!).. if it goes off, it is poor quality and something has obviously gone wrong in the manufacturing process. That’s great that Costco will take it back and replace it easily, but what about the folks who don’t know to take it back and use it to the detriment of their health?

      This post is clearly a “heads up” and “this is my take” type of post. If you read the post in its entirety, you will see the language indicates such. I stand by my conclusions. I don’t buy my healthy fats at places like Costco.

      • Sarah, The Healthy Home Economist
        Sarah, The Healthy Home Economist July 9, 2013 at 10:51 pm

        Oh, I would also recommend the book Foodopoly which describes how the big retailers like WalMart and Costco have helped to destroy the food system in the US. A shocking read and you may find that you agree with me and avoid shopping at places like this after reading it.

  236. I like alot of what you have to say Sarah, but this post is just over the top. It appears that you have more of a vendetta with large business and that is why you are bashing Costco. You have absolutely NO PROOF that their product is subpar. It is your opinion that small business is better, and that is why you suspect their quality, but honestly your post has just made me go out tomorrow and buy Carrington Farms coconut oil. I have never had issues and frankly I take issue with people who think that expensive is “better.” I even got 5 more friends to buy it from Costco and makes me even less want to buy super over-priced expensive coconut from uppity small businesses who think I should do them a favor and support them. Well lower your prices and maybe well talk. We all work hard for our money and pushing Radiant Life or Tropical traditions without evidence is is just wrong. You have really struck a raw nerve with your slander…

    • Sarah, The Healthy Home Economist
      Sarah, The Healthy Home Economist July 10, 2013 at 10:10 pm

      Yes, there is proof .. the proof is that the coconut oil went bad. Coconut oil does not go bad like that even in a very hot pantry in a plastic container unless it is low quality or manufacturer’s defect (as in poorly filtered or the other potential reasons listed in this post). Slander is making false statements that damage a person’s reputation .. this story is not made up. The coconut oil went bad (also happened for others, not just one person) and I asked some credible authorities on what the likely reasons might be and posted it.

      Is Carrington perhaps stretched by the high inventory demands from Costco that it has let its quality slip? Perhaps so. Something obviously went wrong. What exactly, we don’t know. We only know that some folks are getting bad coconut oil from Costco. You can decide for yourself how you wish to act upon this information.

      • Actually, I was just wondering where “Mary” is in all this conversation. As someone else mentioned, we don’t know enough about the circumstances around her “bad” coconut oil to accept her story as proof that Carrington’s is bad coconut oil. Had it already been opened and some foreign matter or other food particles been introduced to it to make it go off? Even oils that do go rancid don’t smell like burnt marshmallows or halloween pumpkin, they just smell like rancid oil. Um, people eat burnt marshmallows all the time (marshmallows on a stick held a little too long over the campfire – yum!) and I’ve never noticed that smell being an unpleasant one. And I don’t know that I’ve ever smelled a halloween pumpkin, but I can’t imagine how that would smell bad unless it had been sitting out for way too long and had spoiled. Now spoiled pumpkin is another matter! :) It’s just that the description of the odor of the oil leads me to wonder about the whole story. I can’t imagine rancid coconut oils smelling like those two foods. The smell of rancid oil of any kind is difficult to describe, but I would never think to call it burnt marshmallows or halloween pumpkin. I think we all have questions that we would love to ask Mary. I guess the bottom line is that until I actually experience the same thing with my own oil, I will continue to use Carrington Farms’. I am grateful for the availability of this coconut oil at such a reasonable price because it it weren’t for that, I wouldn’t be able to afford any at all on my tiny retirement pension. And yes, I do know how to stretch my budget to get the most out of my dollars, I’ve lived at or below poverty level for most of my life. And yes, my home gets quite warm in the summer with no a/c in our house (albeit not 100 degrees) and I’ve never ever had problems with the oil. I keep some of it in a small container in my purse because I don’t want to be without it anywhere I go. My fingers go into it for application to my skin. It gets melted, and I’m sure my fingers are not always as meticulously clean as they could be, and yet even that oil doesn’t ever spoil. I don’t know, this whole thing just seems too preposterous to me.

        Yoohoo, Mary? Are you out there? Please step in and chat with us!

        • Sarah, The Healthy Home Economist
          Sarah, The Healthy Home Economist July 11, 2013 at 8:59 am

          Given the tone of many of these comments, I understand why Mary hasn’t chimed in!

          • Mary is not under attack! I haven’t seen a single comment here (and I have read every one) that sounded like anyone was attacking Mary. All she did was share an experience she had with you; she had no idea you’d share it with us and that all this would result. However, if I were Mary and I had a freshly opened jar of coconut oil that was spoiled, I would have been contacting Costco and/or Carrington Farms to investigate. Not that she didn’t do that, but we don’t know, do we? But if it had been opened and used, then stored wherever, no matter the temperature, I would wonder if I had done something to it to cause that, since I’ve never opened a bad jar of it. But we don’t know the details, do we? So how can we pass judgment on a product based on a story with so few details, just because it was purchased in a large store? Would that same judgment be applied to the same product purchased online at CF’s higher price? I understand where you are coming from, Sarah, it’s just that you have really made some sweeping comments based on too little information, okay, also based on your opinion of big box stores’ products. I’m assuming that the information you passed on to us is all that you know, or you would surely have pulled more out of the bag by now. The tone of these comments has nothing to do with Mary and I’m sure Mary would realize that. If she has seen this post she will surely realize that there is something that has not been told yet and will clue us in. I guarantee that no one here is going to “attack” her. She may be embarrassed about how far her short story has gone and to hear so much in defense of that oil. And apparently she also shops at Costco, and appreciates a good bargain there. Right now we can only speculate about the details of the story. Sigh . . .

          • Sarah, The Healthy Home Economist
            Sarah, The Healthy Home Economist July 11, 2013 at 11:56 am

            If I were Mary and saw the attacking comments made toward the author of this article (me), I certainly would not chime in for fear that I would be next! If you feel my comments are over the top, feel free to ignore them. That doesn’t mean I will change my conclusions on the subject however. I will have more to say about big box retailers and how they have played a big role in destroying our food system in upcoming posts. It’s not just Big Food that is to blame.

          • Hi Sarah,
            Just one last note to you and that will be all: I have never meant to make you feel attacked. It is my understanding that when a blogger writes an article and gives readers the option to comment on said article, you are left wide open for comments that may or may not agree with your stance. I truly don’t believe anyone was attacking you or Mary or anyone else. I am so sorry that you see it that way. Seems to me the only attackee has been Costco and whatever products Costco sells. And yes, you do have the right to your own opinion on that. And we have made known our right to object, especially when a product is being railed against simply because it was sold in a particular store. That is the beef here, nothing else. No attacks. Just people standing up for what they feel is good and right. I for one have read many of your articles and appreciated the information you made available to us. And I’ll continue to do so. We all make choices daily and will ultimately reap the consequences of those choices. And we will live with that. Thank you for sharing your opinions and valuable information. The end :)

  237. Why should Mary feel afraid to chime in? She just described her coconut oil experience and didn’t make any recommendations as to where to shop or what brands to buy.

    I am so glad for this post! I will switch to buying to Costco coconut oil from now on. I looked at one of the recommended sources and they have a no return policy based on taste – if I happen to get a rancid batch, I wouldn’t be able to return it. Or it would be a big hassle and I don’t have time for this! I couldn’t even find a customer service email, just a form to fill out for a catalog. I know I will not have that problem at Costco, and I’m really looking forward to reading about other things to buy there.

  238. Pingback: House - Heart - Home

  239. My DIL buys her Coconut oil in the big containers at Costco and she is very happy with it …they are really Paleo Purist and rarely color outside the Paleo lines and she buys organic and I believe the author and everyone else is entitled to their own opinion as to what goes on in their diets….I buy Nutiva because that is the best that is available to me and until something else comes along I have to use it…lets play nice and all make our own decisions…There are two of us in my family and it would take me a year to use a huge container of oil…RG

  240. Sadly, I can’t quite say I trust this blog or any blog to tell me what kind of quality a product has. I want the truth about our food and its sources as much as anyone here, but there’s also a line in which the presentation of the information borders on alarmist – my opinion is that this one is a bit past that line. I’m always appreciative of information and people’s views, but I also think that we whole-food people can come off as the most judgmental, cynical, snarky people on the planet if one person has a view that is different from our own. If your family can’t reasonably get products from anywhere but a place like costco and you’ve done the research about the product — you’re not wrong, unsafe, or “risky” for doing it. You’re not making reckless choices to intentionally hurt your loved ones. Don’t let a blog post make you feel like you are.

  241. I questioned this article when I first read it especially the fact that it was based on one persons experience. I have gotten a lot of good info from your site and it disappoints me that you did not research this before you made the post. I know we need to question the products we purchase and how they are processed. Everyone is trying to make a dollar and the organic market is not exception. I hope you will research this further and do a follow up to this article.

  242. Pingback: Day One: Shopping non-processed / organic on a budget | 90 Day Real Food Challenge

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