Motorists passing by the head post office roundabout towards TVS Tollgate are in for a surprise this past few days. The showstopper was a strange looking contraption standing at a refreshment stall in the area.
The shop, Lakshmi sarbat and cool drinks, opened four days ago, has been attracting a lot of thirsty motorists who visit it for a cool sharbat, tender coconut, and soft drinks. Many though throng the outlet to just have a cursory look at the coconut piercer and slicer installed at the shop. The contraption, which is interesting to look at, can punch a coin-size hole on to the tender coconut shell in seconds.
A straw is then inserted and the tender coconut is served to the customer. After consuming the water, the machine is used once again to slice the coconut into two-half’s and the tender coconut ‘flesh’ is served in minutes.
The tender coconut is priced at Rs. 30, slightly on the higher side compared to other roadside vendors. But it is only to offsets the transportation cost, says A. Badushah, who manages the store. “ The coconuts are large sourced from Pollachi a single nut contains 400 ml of coconut water,” he adds. S. Arumugam, the proprietor, who first saw the machine at an agricultural exhibition in Thanjavur said he had come across small instruments that punch holes in the coconut, but he chose the machine for its speed. “The machine is a time-saver, we can serve tender coconuts to more customers in quick succession, when compared to traditional slicing methods using sickle or aruvals,” said Sheik Dawood, who works at the store. He claims that the store is the first to introduce the contraption in Tiruchi. “We will serve coconut water throughout the year, thanks to this machine,” he says.