n. A vegetable shortening made of coconut oil used in cooking.
Copha, a registered trademark of Peerless, is a form of vegetable fat shortening made from hydrogenated coconut oil. It is 100% fat, at least 98% of which is saturated. It also contains soybean lecithin. It is popular in Australia where it is used in many foods for children, such as rocky road, and chocolate crackles, which are made from Rice Bubbles, copha and cocoa powder.
Copha is produced only in Australia, but there are many suppliers of hydrogenated coconut fat in various forms worldwide. It is a necessary ingredient in traditional Australian sweets such as chocolate crackles and white Christmas, and a "chocolate coating" on baked goods that amounts to a rather waxy form of compound chocolate.
Concern about the health hazards of hydrogenated fats is likely to be a significant contribution to the declining popularity of Copha-based confectionery.
In New Zealand, it is marketed as Kremelta. Known in Europe as coconut fat, it is available either in its pure form, or in solid form with lecithin added as an emulsifier. In France it is marketed as Végétaline and in Germany it is marketed as Palmin. In the United States it is not readily available.