Cashew nuts are very popular in western diets today, with everybody crazy about nuts. Cashews are sold in almost every supermarket in Europe and the USA: salted or non-salted, roasted or raw, as whole nuts, split nuts, or broken nuts. It is consumed as a stand-alone snack, mixed with dried fruits and nuts, as part of fruit and nut bars, as cashew paste, or as part of Asian dishes.
West Africa plays a key role in cashew nut production but is not currently visible in the consumer market. Only a minor fraction of the raw cashew nuts are processed where they are harvested. About 90% of production is exported, mainly to Vietnam and India, for cracking, peeling, conditioning, and packaging. From there, the cashew travels to consumer markets for further processing according to specific market and consumer needs.
What possibilities are there for cashew processing in West Africa to expand? Fair & Sustainable Consulting analyzed the value chain for cashew processing in West Africa, on behalf of the Centre for the Promotion of Imports from developing countries (CBI). CBI intends to develop a support programme for local processing companies, especially in Côte d’Ivoire and Benin. You can find the entire report here.
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