Vital Coconut Development Unit ethnobotany class visit

The ethnobotany class studies the plants people use and how those plants are used. The unit on material cultural uses of plant products includes economic botany, economically valuable plants and their uses. The coconut tree is literally the tree of life and a tremendous natural resource. Federated States of Micronesia Public Law 18-68, the Coconut Tree Act of 2014, placed the former national Coconut Development Authority with Vital. Vital has been executing a mandate from the President of the FSM and the FM Congress with an eye toward rapidly developing the coconut sector in the FSM into a long-term sustainable economic activity. Source: Vital Transition of CDA: Phase I

Bus pulls in at 3:59
Under this mandate Vital has set a number of goals. Vital plans to develop and upgrade domestic processing capacity of coconut.Vital will be able to process copra produced in the FSM into crude coconut oil for fuel, and coconut meal for animal feed. In a separate process Vital also continues to produce coconut oil for cooking, soap, and the production of body oil.

Homage to group entries in countless movies: Jeanie, Casan-Jenae, Angela

During this field trip the class learns about the development of the coconut oil industry in the FSM. Vital CDU purchases copra from the outer islands providing a critical source of income for outer islanders. The oil is then sold to retailers. Vital CDU is a wholesaler of oil.


Role call by photo: Sandra

The rest of the class

Kerat, Ravelyn, Sandra, Casan-Jenae

Coconut oil, diesel grade

Expelled copra, the copra cake is excellent pig feed

Casan-Jenae, Cherlylinda, and Ravelyn. The drums are also filled with coconut oil

Eddie explains that if the copra is good, 100 pounds of copra will produce 60 pounds of oil, 30 pounds of copra cake. The rest is lost as sludge or moisture loss.

Copra input

Eddie talking to the class, Angela, Randy, Al, Michelle, and Jeanie up front

Ravelyn, Kerat, Angela, Randy, Sandra, Al, Michelle

Eddie showing the class the copra cake, Norton and Dukay watching

Steel tank is a new addition, full of oil

Filter input


Filter oil outputs: diesel grade

On the other side the Vital CDU produces food and cosmetics grade oil

Kerat, Randy, Sebastion, Dukay listen to the production process

The oil expeller press


Soap molds

Papaya and jasmine scented soaps, hotel size


More soap!

Dukay with coconut oil

Vital CDU will custom label soap for customers

Departure for campus at 4:31 P.M. 


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