To some, used coconut husks are regarded as trash, going by the litter at the beaches at the Coast region or on the roadsides, but a section of Shanzu residents have seized an opportunity and turned it into money minting business.
James Mwandoe, popularly known as JJ by his peers sells non-matured coconut, also known as Madafu to tourists and other beach revellers at the beaches in Shanzu and says the business of selling coconut husks earns him more than selling Madafu.
The fact that the region faces an acute shortage of charcoal after the government banned logging, JJ gets orders for husks from various hotels in Shanzu, Bamburi and Mtwapa, which use them as firewood for cooking.
“They burn better than the usual firewood and in recent days, I get orders every day from small hotels in this area and beyond. Those who cook beans and green grams prefer them because they are economical,” said JJ adding, “I am making money while cleaning up the environment. I sell three husks at Sh50.”
JJ also uses the husks to wash tourists’ sandy legs after they come from the beach, and for that service, he charges Sh20 per person.
From all these, JJ says he pockets at least Sh2,000 a day during off-peak seasons and as high as Sh5,000 when the season is at its peak.