Faces were turning green with envy at all of the amazing products on display at this years Go Green Expo held over this past weekend.
Eco Store, juices, wines, Trade Aid, sodas, bikes, furniture, composting systems, laundry powder alternatives, cosmetics, public talks … and these were only some of the things on display.
I managed to snag two $5 tickets from good ol’ Grabone for myself and a friend. After catching the 007 bus there (I will forever find that bus number hil-ar-ious) on Saturday morning, we were away laughing at the ASB Showgrounds. Because neither of us own homes (yet) and LOVE food, naturally we bee-lined for the food section, and that is where we found this hugely popular stand with a beautiful (and if we’re honest, teary) ethos.
The Organic Mechanics, or Organic MCs, had a decent crowd of people lining up for their smoothies. A line that apparently one of their blenders was oblivious to at the time… (as is life). The smoothies were served in Ecocups, and the vibrancy the boys put into their creations were most definitely present in the taste. What did I try? The Athena – feijoas, coconut water, banana, apple, dates and coconut oil = yummo! They also have an excellent facebook page where they have a range of awe-inspiring posts. Definitely worth a “like”.
Right next door to these guys was another hugely popular stall with Daniel from COYO “heaven in a mouthful”.
They offer both coconut milk yoghurt and coconut milk icecream alternatives with the yoghurt at the Expo to sample. I tried both the plain and the mango. I am a sucker for thick yoghurts and tend to buy different ones each time I do my weekly shop. I can tell you that this is definitely one of the thickest (and yummiest) yoghurt ranges I’ve tried. (FYI – the Puhoi Valley range would be up there, creamy wise). The real drawcard with COYO though, is that it’s 100% dairy free, gluten free, soy free and the health benefits of coconut are second-to-none. This business idea was thought up by Henry Gosling at 3am in 2009. Having grown up in Fiji and used coconut in most aspects of cooking, he had a few ideas about how to make this product work. You can find these products in most wholefood and health shops or you can use their Store Locator to do all the hard work for you. I’ll definitely be tracking down some of their coconut icecream!
Coconut seemed to be a strong theme of the day. I saw lots of different coconut oils, butters and sugars (which tastes surprisingly similar to brown sugar). The health benefits of this ‘Tree of Life’ are obviously spreading and people seem to be quite keen to incorporate these products into their cooking.
Here’s a selection of a few other things I saw (and rated). It really helped having so many testers available so I could try lots of ‘firsts’. I can now say that I have sampled fresh organic wheatgrass juice and yet, I still don’t know how I feel about it. The smell wasn’t so pleasant. The actual drinking of it was okay and the after taste was really nice and sweet almost. I’m still confused and I’m not sure I’ll ever figure it out. Perhaps that’s the point? So here goes…
It was really neat to see the streamlining of the Fairtrade and Organic certifications of products. Stall holders and visitors were both in high spirits sending off great vibes – I suspect from all of the energy boosting treats available and the affordable deals placed on products.
It was a great day out and I even came away with some ‘homework’ – Ecoman by Malcolm Rands. “From a garage in Northland to a pioneering global brand”. Can’t wait to get stuck in and learn more about the Eco Store’s humble beginnings!