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Thứ Tư, 31 tháng 12, 2014

India: Tribals of Pachamalai hills to be trained in cashew cultivation

Tuesday, December 30, 2014

In order to control the migration of 'Malayalee' tribals of Pachamalai hills, the forest department is planning to train them on cultivation of cashew nuts and silver oaks. With tapioca cultivation already underway, the multi-cropping is expected to provide the tribals an additional revenue.

The forest department would be constructing water harvesting tanks across the forest ranges for the cultivation of cashew nuts and silver oaks. The whole training process is expected to cost around Rs 1 crore. The project will be implemented from the 'State Balanced Growth Fund' (SBGF) to the Pachamalai hilly area in the district. District forest officer N Satheesh said, "The funds from the SBGF are expected early next year." He added that the multi-cropping would improve the livelihood of tribals and hep them earn an extra revenue.

Forest officials will provide the seedlings of cashew and silver oaks to the tribals. A total of six water harvesting ponds would be constructed as part of the project. According to a 2001 census, Pachamalai hills, spread across three districts, has a population of about 15,000 people, mostly tribals, who are involved in farming activities. However, tribals started to migrate to downhill looking for green pastures. In order to control the migration as well as protect the habitat, the forest department is stepping up efforts by setting up the eco-tourism project in the hills.

The project is being rolled out for the improvement of the tribal population who will be involved in maintaining the water falls and tourist spots in the hills. Satheesh said that a silver oak takes eight years for maturing and can fetch good money, which is currently practiced by farmers in Ooty. The forest officials are already constructing a number of percolation ponds and renovating small dams to save the rainwater in the hills. The training project is expected to begin from Pongal.


Nigeria ATA: N1.7trn investments in Nigeria’s cashew subsector under threat

December 29, 2014

An estimated $11 bil­lion (N1.7 trillion) in­vestment in Nigeria’s agricultural sector by pri­vate investors and develop­ment partners since the Fed­eral Government’s launch of the Agricultural Transfor­mation Agenda in 2011 may be facing a huge setback, with negligence, lack of value addition and poor pro­cessing of the cashew subsec­tor by stakeholders. Already, indications have shown that while other sec­tors are receiving attention and huge investments from both the private sector and Federal Government under its Agricul­tural Transformation Agenda (ATA), the reverse seems to be the case for cashew sector.

Stakeholders, farmers and major players in the cashew in­dustry alleged that the Federal Government’s total neglect of this sector would always affect the agricultural transformation agenda and investment goals. This declining support to cashew has been attributed to substandard export packaging processes for the international market, where Nigeria is los­ing about N180 billions per annum. Nigeria is therefore said to be losing a whopping $50 mil­lion in export earnings yearly due to the rejection of poor quality nuts popularly referred to as export rejects as result of lack of proper attention from government.

Cashew which is an im­portant industrial and export crop whose potential is yet to be fully exploited in Nigeria is said to provide livelihood for over 300,000 families and has created 600, 0000 jobs with 80 per cent of raw cashew nuts from Nigeria exported to In­dia, Vietnam and other coun­tries. Nigeria is also said to be earning over N24 billion in­comes from cashew nuts an­nually and also earns about N35 billion from cashew nuts alone being exported.

The main cashew products are raw nuts, cashew kernels, cashew apple and cashew nut shell liquid which are all trad­ed on the international market. The production of cashew nut is mostly in the hands of small-scale farmers who are still suffering lack of support from government. In Nigeria, cashew grows successfully in virtually all agro-ecological zones in­cluding the semi-arid areas but with high concentration in the middle belt areas in smallholder farms and plan­tations. Cashew production comes from over 28 states including Kogi, Kwara,Oyo, Edo, Ondo, Anambra, Enugu, Benue, Cross River, Imo, So­koto, Nassarawa, Ogun Osun, Plateau, Kebbi and the Fed­eral Capital Territory (FCT) among others.

Unfortunately, the Nigerian cashew industry is still suffer­ing from declining produc­tivity and dwindling export earnings, thus making the commodity less competitive in the international market, compared with other African countries like Gabon, Cote d’Ivoire, Benin Republic and Ghana. Over 30 per cent of cashew nuts produced in Ni­geria annually are smuggled across the border as a result of price discrepancy in products moved into the global market by other countries like Be­nin Republic where the crop fetches a premium in the inter­national market.

According to the Managing Director of Universal Quest Limited, Sotonye Anga, the sector needs attention and support from Federal Govern­ment, saying that it has been neglected for a long time and Nigerian farmers in the ca­shew sector are suffering. He said that farmers couldn’t afford to buy the right materials for packing cashew, which makes them to resort to using substandard materials for packaging cashew. He ex­plained that the right material for packing cashew is jute bag, and a piece of jute bag sells for N350,000 and because farmers cannot afford the jute bag, they use polypropolyn bag, which sells for N5. Cur­rently, there is no jute bags production in Nigeria. All the jute bags used in Nigeria are imported and the kind of duty paid on it is high which result to high cost jute bag and makes the bags unfriendly for farmers.

Anga who is also the Spokesman for National As­sociation of Cashew Asso­ciation of Nigeria, said: “Most times, what you see on those fairly used jute bags are prod­uct of Ivory Coast and Ghana. We lost our identity as a nation producing cashew because there is no product from Nige­ria on those jute bags because the fairly used jute bag carries different names. The fairly used jute bag is weak in nature and in strength. Sometimes it is contaminated because the bags have been used in pack­aging stockfish and when you use it to package cashew, the cashew’s smell will now turn to stockfish. All these things are affecting the image of Ni­geria and it is not good for our brand integrity because we are talking about brand iden­tity, national pride and cashew economy.

He said that government should grant the association 100 per cent duty waiver on jute bags import in order to rescue cashew industry, add­ing that government should also invest more to improve seedling production so that farmers can cultivate more ar­eas with cashew. He urged Federal Govern­ment to set aside N10 billion-intervention fund, which will be utilised in creating infra­structures to process cashew such that Nigerians who are interested in cashew value ad­dition, can access the fund. He arged that government needs to understand that there is need for cashing-in, in the cash in cashew. He added that there is need to set up cashew factory in Ni­geria, which will create jobs, reduce unemployment, reduce poverty and increase revenue, adding that if proper attention is given to the cashew indus­try, Nigeria has the potential of generating revenue of 1trillion annually instead of N35 billion it is generating presently.

However, the Head of De­partment, Aulticulture, Col­lege of Agriculture, Kabba- Kogi State, Dr. F.K Ogundare said that the cashew was not the only crop that is being ne­glected, saying that there are about three crops which are not getting attentions includ­ing citrus, pineapple and ko­lanut. He added: “the major prob­lem is lack of awareness be­cause people are not aware of the economic relevance of such products. We have inad­equate processing facilities, majorly cashew remains ex­ported but that is why produc­tion has been on the high level because people don’t consume it here. We don’t know how to pro­cess it which is the juice and it becomes a waste. Majority of people considered it as a waste and they don’t want to go into it because it’s a waste.”


Thứ Ba, 30 tháng 12, 2014

India: Weaver ants make crop pests see red

December 29, 2014

A couple of red ants crawling up one's body is sure to cause jitters, but a colony of them on a cashew tree can actually help reduce damage to the invaluable crop. Findings indicate that red ants or weaver ants (Oecophylla smaragdina)— known for their painful bites and formic acid sprays—are a potential biological control agent against a wide range of pests found in several fruit and cash crops. The cashew crop, in particular, is susceptible to quite a few pests such as the stem and root borer, tea mosquito bug, apple and nut borer, thrips, leaf miner, and the leaf and mealy bug. Of these, the tea mosquito causes the most damage.

Recent experiments conducted by scientists of the Indian council of agricultural research (ICAR) at Old Goa have shown that red ants colonized on cashew trees can actually help control the tea mosquito bug. "This is a harmless way of treating the pest. It is also easy for farmers to manage," N P Singh, director of the ICAR research complex, Old Goa, said. Singh and another scientist, R Maruthadurai, reported their findings at a national conference on innovation in traditional practices for cultivation of fruit, vegetable and plantation crops that was held in Old Goa recently.

The scientists used 75 predatory ant colonies from other trees for their experiment. Initially, the ant nests were not directly put up on the control trees. "Food material such as dried fish and sugary water were provided to help the colonies establish themselves. Tree branches were connected by fine nylon thread for easy movement of ants," the report stated.

After about 30% of the foliage had been colonized by red ants, five trees were selected at random for observations. Five other trees that bore no red ants were also monitored during the flushing, flowering and fruiting phases of the crop from November to February. "The results revealed that the damage score of 1 (on a 0-4 scale) was recorded in trees colonized by red ants, whereas a maximum damage score of four was recorded in trees without red ants. The tea mosquito bug adult and the nymph population were significantly lower in plants colonized by red ants. A larger number of productive shoots was also observed in trees that housed the predatory ants than those that had none," the study stated.


Chủ Nhật, 28 tháng 12, 2014

Vietnam: Ministry greenlights cashew project

(27/12/2014) The Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development has approved a programme to sustainably grow the cashew industry, which targets output rising to 400,000 tonnes by the end of this decade from 286,000 tonnes now.
Scientists check cashew plant growth in Dong Phu District, Binh Phuoc Province. The Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development has approved a programme to sustainably grow the cashew industry, which aims to boost output to 400,000 tonnes by the end of this decade from the current 286,000 tonnes. - VNA/VNS Photo Dinh Hue
It also has a target of doubling the ratio of fully processed nuts to 20 per cent and processing more cashew shell and wood to add value.
Besides, domestic cashew consumption is expected to account for half of the total output, up from around 10 per cent now.
The programme also seeks to review and tweak cashew zoning plans; replace aged trees; and develop intercropping models, high-quality seedlings, and advanced farming techniques.
The four provinces of Binh Phuoc, Dong Nai, Ba Ria-Vung Tau, and Binh Thuan will remain the main cashew cultivation areas, with a combined growing area of 200,000ha compared to the country's total cultivation area of 300,00ha.
To achieve all these targets, the industry will take measures like modernising technologies and equipment to expand processing capacity, improve quality, diversify, and ensure hygiene and food safety.
The Government will continue to invest in developing high-quality strains that are resistant to diseases and climate change.
More research will be undertaken to increase mechanisation in caring for, harvesting and processing cashew, and agricultural extension activities will be stepped up.
The industry will step up training to meet its future needs.
Trade promotion will be strengthened both at home and abroad to enable the industry to meet the export target of more than US$2.5 billion by 2020 as well as increase consumption in the domestic market.
The industry will step up co-operation with international organisations for developing new strains and farming and processing techniques.
According to the Crop Production Department, the area under cashew has reduced significantly to around 310,000ha now.
The industry expects exports this year to be around 300,000 tonnes worth $2 billion, a record figure, according to the Viet Nam Cashew Association.
Source VNS

Thứ Sáu, 26 tháng 12, 2014

Africa: New Use For Cashew Nut Byproduct Could Help Trap Tsetse Fly

Thu Dec 25, 2014

A new chemical method applied to a byproduct of cashew nuts could make it easier to lure tsetse flies to traps and create new revenue for nut producers in sub-Saharan Africa, according to a report in AllAfrica. The tsetse fly kills 3 million livestock each year in Africa, according to U.N. reports. Fatal if untreated in humans, it infects up to 75,000 people with trypanosomiasis and causes more than $4 billion USD in agriculture income losses.

Cashew nut production is widespread in sub-Saharan Africa including Côte d’Ivoire, Nigeria and Tanzania. Guinea Bissau, the second largest producer in Africa, produces 90,000 tonnes, and almost all the production is exported to India for processing.

A new method produces a chemical that attracts flies from cashew nut oil starting material, which could mean African countries could produce the chemicals locally, according to a report in Green Chemistry. Cashew nut producers generate more than 300,000 tonnes of this waste product every year.

Tsetse flies carry sleeping sickness, or African trypanosomiasis. The technology could offer a sustainable and cheaper way to make two tsetse fly-attractant chemicals —  3-ethylphenol and 3-propylphenol — according to a paper published in November in Green Chemistry. Many odor attractants on the market such as buffalo urine are prohibitively expensive and not widely available in large quantities, AllAfrica reports.

The cashew nut liquid byproduct contains the chemical cardanol, which can be used to make 3-propylphenol and 3-ethylphenol using chemical processes developed by Lukas Goossen, a chemist at the University of Kaiserslautern in Germany who jointly led the research, AllAfrica reports. The resulting attractant can be coated on a plastic sheet along with an ordinary insecticide, said David Cole-Hamilton, a chemist at the University of St Andrews, U.K., who also led the research. “The attractant lures the insects to the sheet where they are poisoned,” he told SciDev.Net.

The work is commendable, said Andrew Jonathan Nok, a biochemist at Ahmadu Bello University, Nigeria, one of the country’s leading sleeping sickness researchers. But advances in trapping flies are unlikely to lead to the elimination of sleeping sickness because tsetse flies may learn to ignore the attractants, he said. Drug and vaccine development are still the best ways to tackle the disease, according to Nok.


Thứ Năm, 25 tháng 12, 2014

Vietnam: Cashew industry urged domestic market focus

Dec 02, 2014

The cashew industry needs to boost consumption in the lucrative domestic market, a forum on the nut's nutritional value heard in HCM City yesterday.
Viet Nam's cashew exports have surged in recent years, but consumption at home remains very modest compared to levels in India, the US, or Australia, Nguyen Duc Thanh, chairman of the Viet Nam Cashew Association, said.
Dinh Thi My Loan, chairwoman of the Viet Nam Retailers Association, blamed the low sales at home to high prices, poor marketing, and lack of diverse products.
Besides, processors are not interested in the local market, she said, adding that cashew products are mainly sold during the Lunar New Year, making it hard to create a consumption habit among consumers.
Nguyen Tan Thanh, deputy director of cashew processing firm Thao Nguyen Co, said many people do not eat the nut in Viet Nam despite its high nutritional value because of high prices.
As a result, local consumption accounts for just around 5 per cent of output while in India 30-40 per cent is sold domestically, he said.
To promote consumption in the domestic market, Loan said the industry needs to strengthen advertising and marketing and develop more cashew-based products.
Besides trying to take their products to supermarkets and traditional retail channels like markets and shops, businesses should also make more effort to sell online, she said.
Educating people about the nutritional benefits of cashew is also key, she said.
Do Thi Ngoc Diep, director of the HCM City Nutrition Centre, said cashew nuts are high in calories, with 100gam providing 550-600 kcal compared to 300-350 kcal for cereals and 150-200kcal for meat.
They are also an abundant source of essential minerals, especially manganese, potassium, copper, iron, magnesium, zinc, and selenium, she said.
About 80 per cent of the fatty acids contained in the nuts are monounsaturated fatty acids, mainly oleic, which are good for people with heart diseases or diabetes who also have high triglyceride levels, she said.
It is a low blood sugar food, largely because it contains a high amount of fibre, she said.
By replacing animal-based foods, cashew can help prevent non-contagious diseases and malnutrition, she added.
Source: Vietnam News Biz Hub

Cashew nut by-product may help cut sleeping sickness

Wed Dec 24, 2014

A new method for making chemicals that lure tsetse flies to traps has been developed. It uses a cheap by-product from the cashew nut industry as its starting material, so the discovery may mean the flies — which carry sleeping sickness (also known as African trypanosomiasis) — can be trapped at a lower cost. The method, published in Green Chemistry last month, could offer a sustainable and more-affordable way to make two ‘attractant’ chemicals: 3-ethylphenol and 3-propylphenol.

Many existing odour attractants are prohibitively expensive and not widely available in large quantities. It is possible to use buffalo urine, which naturally contains chemicals that attract the flies, as a substitute — though this has the downside of smelling rather unpleasant.

Because the new method produces the attractants from cashew nut oil starting material, it may mean African countries could produce the chemicals locally. Cashew nut producers, which are widespread in Sub-Saharan African countries including Côte d’Ivoire, Nigeria and Tanzania, generate more than 300,000 tons of this waste product every year.

The liquid contains the chemical cardanol, which can be used to make both 3-propylphenol and 3-ethylphenol, through chemical processes developed by Lukas Goossen, a chemist at the University of Kaiserslautern in Germany who jointly led the research.

David Cole-Hamilton, a chemist at the University of St Andrews, United Kingdom, who also led the research, tells SciDev.Net that the resulting attractant can be coated on a plastic sheet or similar surface, along with an ordinary insecticide. “The attractant lures the insects to the sheet where they are poisoned,” he says.

Cole-Hamilton says the team was anxious to avoid using farmland to produce the raw materials for chemical production. This would put effectively food production and insect control in competition. “For this reason, we targeted waste products from food or other production processes,” he says. The new process to make the attractants from cashew nut liquid is cheaper than existing methods using synthetic compounds. Yet it involves using small quantities of an expensive Palladium-based catalyst, so it the attractants would still end up too expensive for most individuals to buy, Cole Hamilton thinks.

“A whole village might be able to [collectively buy them], particularly if there were a government or international subsidy,” he says. However, there may be a solution to this problem, he says. One other product from the process his team has developed is 1-octene, a chemical used to make polythene. “World demand for 1-octene is 600,000 tons [a year] and it sells at US$2 per kilogram so the profit from this product could be used to reduce the cost of the attractant,” he says.

Andrew Jonathan Nok, a biochemist at Ahmadu Bello University, Nigeria, and one of the country’s leading sleeping sickness researchers, says the work is commendable. But, he adds, that advances in trapping flies are unlikely to lead to the elimination of sleeping sickness in themselves because tsetse flies may learn to ignore the attractants.

Nok believes drug and vaccine development remain the best paths for tackling the disease.


Thứ Hai, 22 tháng 12, 2014

India’s cashewnut exporters eye emerging China market

December 22, 2014

India’s cashewnut exporters are facing a tough time due to multiple factors that include higher input costs, shrinking sources and trade barriers in exporting to China.India is the world’s largest producer of cashewnuts and is known as a source of good quality cashewnuts. It was also the top exporter, but has now been replaced by Vietnam, which is keen to increase its cashewnut exports from the current $2 billion (around Rs.12,500 crore).

Despite various incentives provided to cashew nut exporters in India, exports have remained low in the last few years. According to official sources, India’s cashewnut exports stood at around Rs.5,062 crore in FY2012-13, but it declined by around 20% to about Rs. 4,046 crore in FY2013-14.While, production has grown slightly in India, demand has risen significantly due to higher income in India. Exporters say it is preferable to sell in the domestic market because the realisation is quick and assured.

As such there is a shortage of cashewnut for mills, and India’s imports, mostly from African countries, have remained steady in the recent years at around Rs.4,500 to Rs.5,500 crore per year. However, countries in Africa are planning value-addition and are eyeing direct exports of cashewnuts.Meanwhile, input costs are increasing mainly due to increasing wages in Kerala, a prominent cashewnut exporting state in India. Earlier this month, the Kerala government decided to hike labour wages by around 35% for cashewnut labourers, a move that is expected to hurt exports in the coming months

S. Sankaranarayanan of Swathy Enterprises, a prominent cashewnut exporter from Kerala, told The Dollar Business</em></strong> that cashew kernels exports was dominated by India, but cashew exports from Vietnam and Brazil has grown steadily with the help of increasing mechanisation. “Exporters in Vietnam offer cashew nuts at a competitive price compared to India due to lower wages, lower power charges and better trade policies,” he said.

He added that the while it is good to see that the government is providing support for modernisation and mechanisation of cashewnut processing, it must ensure the welfare of labourers because the sector is a labour intensive one with over 95% comprising Under such circumstances, increasing the acreage under cashew is needed to keep India at the top. However, tapping growing markets is also required. Industry sources say that China is perhaps the most promising market now and imported close to Rs. 2,000 crore from Vietnam.However, Indians are unable to tap into the market due to trade barriers placed by China. According to Indian exporters, Indian cashew is of good quality and Chinese importers are interested to buy cashew from India as well, but import duty of around 5% diverts them to Vietnam.

Some Indian cashew exporting companies are increasing their presence in Vietnam in order to continue operations and to remain in the export market

Zambia: State mulls restoring cashew nut industry

December 22, 2014


GOVERNMENT is exploring ways of reviving the cashew nut industry to create more jobs and improve the economy in Western Province, permanent secretary Augustine Seyuba has said.

Mr Seyuba said in an interview on Saturday that a lot of investors have shown interest in the industry.
“We are desirous to find out what happened to what was once a thriving industry, especially in light of the many investors throughout the world who are showing interest,” he said.

Mr Seyuba said an investor recently inquired to be supplied 500 tonnes of cashew nuts but the province cannot produce even a tonne.

He said the province has a number of cashew nut plantations and he will ensure that they are revamped.

“In the past, people from Mozambique came here to learn about our cashew nut industry. Their industry is now thriving whilst ours has collapsed,” Mr Seyuba said.

He said the industry once revamped will be an opportunity to create jobs and wealth for the province.


Sri Lanka: Cashew cultivation workshop held

Monday, December 22, 2014

A cashew cultivation workshop intended for cashew growers and prospective cashew growers in the areas of Akkaraipattu, Ampara, Damana, Kalmunai, Mahaoya, Navidaveli and Padiyathalawa was conducted at the Ampara Open University Centre auditorium recently. It was organised by the National Plantations Management Institute, Sri Lanka Cashew Corporation and Minor Export Crops Promotion Ministry.

It was revealed at this workshop that the Ampara district has been identified by the cashew cultivation experts as a suitable area for cashew cultivation development and extension initiatives.
There are a lot of potential opportunities for Sri Lankan cashew in overseas markets.


India: Raw cashew imports soar as output tumbles

December 21, 2014

Kochi - Imports of Raw Cashew Nuts (RCN) has soared significantly so far during the current fiscal as the indigenous production of the raw material failed to keep pace with industry demand.

In fact, imports during the first eight months of the current financial year have surpassed the projected official production figures for 2014-15.

The total imports during April-November 2014 soared to 7,84,462 tonnes valued at ₹5,332.80 crore from 6,35,020 tonnes valued at ₹3,475.72 crore in the corresponding period last year.

Where as, the first official first advance estimate for the current financial year has put the production at 7,73,490 tonnes against the output of 7,36,560 tonnes in 2013-14.

Cashew industry is claimed to have a capacity to process over two million tonnes of raw cashew nuts for keeping factories running for over 200 days a year. Interestingly, despite being a major importer of the raw nuts, India has, probably for the first time, shipped out 14,152 tonnes valued at ₹122.34 crore during the period under review against 3,333 tonnes in the same period last year.

Much of the shipments of raw nuts were said to have been to Vietnam, where the Indian cashew processors have established processing facilities. They are believed to be shipping out from the imported raw nut stocks to their units in Vietnam, trade sources said The total area under cashew in the country has been on the rise and has increased to 10,27,200 hectares spread over 16 States from 10,07,695 hectares in the last fiscal, according to sources at the Directorate of Cashew and Cocoa Development Directorate under the Union Ministry of Agriculture.

Maharashtra continued to stay on top as the major producer with an estimated output of 2,48,010 tonnes from a total area of 1,86,200 ha in the current fiscal against 2,36,200 tonnes from 1,84,200 ha in 2013-14. Maharashtra is followed by Andhra Pradesh, Odisha and Karnataka.

Even though the winter demand has raised the volume of exports in October and November, the total shipments during the first eight months of current fiscal continued stay far below the shipments during the same period in the previous financial year, Sasi Varma, Executive Director and Secretary, Cashew Export Promotion Council of India, told BusinessLine.

He said the country has shipped out 78,825 tonnes of cashews in April-November 2014 valued at ₹3,473.58 crore at an average unit value of ₹440.67 a kg.Whereas, in the corresponding period last year it stood at 82,772 tonnes valued at ₹3,411.94 crore at the average unit value of ₹412.21 a kg.“Despite the high kernel prices, overseas consumers have started buying it for the festival season. During winter, more quantities are sold in the domestic market also,” he said.


Vietnam: Stable material areas needed for cashew sector’s growth


Stable cashew material supply areas, suitable support policies, and the application of science and technology are crucial for the cashew sector when it comes to securing sustainable development, said Minister of Agriculture and Rural Development (MARD) Cao Duc Phat.

Though being the world’s top cashew exporter, Vietnam has still depended on imported raw materials, he pointed to the unsustainable feature at a conference seeking to boost the cashew sector’s growth held recently in the southern province of Binh Phuoc . 

Binh Phuoc is the largest cashew tree grower in Vietnam . It has over 157,000 ha with the tree, which account for 45 percent of the country’s total cashew tree growing area and contribute 40 percent of the total cashew nut output. 

Selecting saplings that could produce high-quality nuts and good yield for multiplication is a must, the minister said, asking research institutes and the MARD’s Cultivation Department to issue related criteria by the end of the first quarter of 2015. 

Nguyen Van Hoa, Deputy Head of the MARD’s Cultivation Department, said the connectivity among cashew producers, processor and exporters in the development of cashew material supply areas is significant and should be strengthened. 

He also pointed to the need for reviewing the planning of cashew production and boosting technology transfer. 

Hoa suggested that the government allocate more budget to the building and upgrading of infrastructure systems in key cashew farming areas, while providing farmers with preferential loans for intensive cultivation. 

According to the department, Vietnam ’s total cashew area is now 311,000 hectares, featuring a 62-fold rise from 30 years ago, concentrating mostly in the southeast region. 

Average productivity was raised to 950kg per hectare in the 2006-2013 period from only about 500kg per hectare in the 1995-2000 period. 

In 2014, the figure is estimated at 1.172 kg per hectare, a rise of 24 percent compared to that of 2013, said the department. 

The country’s total yearly cashew yield rose nearly 233 times in the 1982-2014 period, reaching nearly 350,000 tonnes in 2014 from only 1,500 tonnes. However, the output has satisfied only 35 percent of processing demand, added the department.-VNA

Source: Vietnam Plus

Thứ Bảy, 20 tháng 12, 2014

India: Govt must take steps to bring new areas under cashew farming

December 12, 2014

The International Nut & Dried Fruit Council (INC) is a non-profit organization, formed in 1983 in Paris, whose mission is to be the international source for information on nuts and dried fruits for health, nutrition, food safety, government standards, regulations and trade quality standards. Spain-headquartered INC represents almonds, cashews, Brazil nuts, hazelnuts, macadamias, pecans, pine nuts, pistachios, walnuts and peanuts. Pratap Nair of Vijayalaxmi Cashew Company, one of India’s largest exporters of cashew, is the ambassador of INC for India. In an interview with FE’s Rajesh Ravi, Nair talks about the health benefits of cashew nuts and its global trade. Excerpts:
How is India placed in the global cashew market in production and share of exports?
India is the largest producer of cashew kernels and second largest exporter of kernels in the world. The global share of Indian exports is 26%, second to Vietnam. This is primarily due to our large domestic consumption.
There have been reports of a new wage settlement in Kerala for cashew workers and its impact and competitiveness of India relative to other countries.
What is your outlook on India’s market share and processing cost?
Wages in Kerala have been hiked by 35%. This will have a severe impact on competitiveness relative to competing countries such as Vietnam. Vietnam’s processing costs were lower to India’s even before this wage hike which comes into effect by January.
Several research reports on benefits of cashew consumption have been circulating in the media? Do you think the reports are authentic?
The health benefits of nut consumption are genuine. It is important to inform the public about the latest data. The information on benefits disseminated by INC is based on solid research by world renowned scientists. Coinciding with world diabetes day, the third World Congress of Public Health Nutrition took place in Spain with participation by top scientists in the nutrition sector. It was disclosed that the incidence rate of Type-2 diabetes can be cut by 52% with regular consumption of all nuts, and that they protect the cardiovascular system. Nuts such as cashews contain Vitamin E, folic acid, magnesium, arginine, plant sterols and photochemical compounds — vital nutrients.
What about cashew nut price? Is it competitive enough when compared to other nuts?
Price of cashews is competitive relative to other competing nuts such as almonds, pistachios, walnuts, hazels etc. Cashews are reasonably priced now, and prices have been stable for several years, creating a conducive climate for supermarkets to run promotions on cashews.
Have new markets come into the trade? Has the health benefit of the nut helped in sustaining demand in traditional markets of US and Europe?
New markets such as South Korea, South America, Turkey, Scandinavian countries etc, are steadily increasing consumption of cashews, and awareness is increasing.
The news of health benefits of cashew is beginning to reach the public in US, Europe and India. INC has formed a global cashew council which is starting a research programme to study the benefits exclusively of cashews. The Cashew Export Promotion Council of India has also begun a study on its nutritional benefits and benefits in controlling diabetes. These initiatives will help in sustaining demand in traditional markets, initiate new demand from non-traditional markets and also help in growth of consumption.
Is supply of raw cashew keeping pace with demand?
Global supply and demand of raw cashew is more or less in equilibrium, which reflects in steady prices for kernels.
Is Indian supply keeping pace with demand? What about the initiative to bring new area into farming?
Processing capacity in India is growing, but unfortunately domestic output of raw seed is not keeping up with demand. We still depend on imported seed. We cover 60% of our requirement from Africa to keep factories running. With African countries wanting to process the seed in Africa itself, it is imperative that the government take steps to bring new areas into cashew farming as well as raise yield in existing farms by introducing scientific techniques and educating farmers.
What constraints are faced by the processing industry?
Key constraints facing the industry are shortage of domestic material, dependence on imports, increasing cost of processing and difficulty in attracting labour to cashew factories. Vietnam processing costs are lower and workers more productive. We will have to focus on mechanization and the government must take steps to support this drive with subsidies.
How is domestic consumption growing? Will it be a preferred market?
The domestic industry is growing at a steady pace, and will definitely be a preferred market in the future.


Vietnam cashew exports approach new high

Cashew nuts are processed for export at the Nhat Huy Joint Stock Company, Binh Duong Province. — VNA/VNS Photo Dinh Hue
HA NOI (VNS)— Viet Nam expects to gain US$2 billion from cashew exports this year, according to the Viet Nam Cashew Association (Vinacas).

It added that by December 15, the value of cashew exports had increased by 22.6 per cent year-on-year to reach $1.93 billion, reported Vietnam Economic Times newspaper.

Therefore, the association believed that the total cashew export value this year will hit a record high of $2 billion.
The average export price of Vietnamese cashew this year was expected to surge by four per cent to reach $6,536 per tonne against last year.

Vietnamese cashew products are exported to 80 countries and territories in the world. The largest export markets are the United States, China and the Netherlands, accounting for 32.8 per cent, 15 per cent and 11.2 per cent of the total export value respectively.

Vinacas has forecast that Vietnamese cashew exports will increase further by the Lunar New Year in 2015, due to rising demand in the world market, and so the export price will also increase.

However, the association said that the local cashew exporters still face several challenges in production and business, such as high transport fees even though the petrol and diesel prices have been cut, lack of quality control and sluggish supply.

Viet Nam has 465 large, medium and small-scale cashew processing factories.

They often face shortage of raw cashew for export processing due to low output by the local cashew trees, said Vinacas Chairman Nguyen Duc Thanh.

The local cashew output was 500,000 tonnes in 2014. The processors had to import 556,000 tonnes of raw cashew in the first 11 months of this year to meet the high demand.

Therefore, Thanh said that the provinces should guide farmers on improving their skills in growing cashew trees for higher output and low production costs in the coming time. — VNS

Source: Vietnam News

Viet Nam retains top slot in cashew exports

Dec. 20, 2014

Viet Nam’s leadership position in cashew exports has been extended for another year, the eighth consecutive year in a row, reports the Viet Nam Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development (MARD).

A spokesperson for MARD recently revealed that export revenues of cashew nuts for 2014 surpassed the US$2 billion mark, sufficient for Viet Nam to retain its top position as the world’s biggest cashew exporter.

The announcement was made at a conference on cashew nut sustainability in Binh Phuoc Province addressing the opportunities and challenges facing the cashew sector.
At present, Viet Nam has around 400,000 ha of cashew cultivation area, mostly in the Central Highlands, south-eastern and south-central coastal regions. The country’s total cashew output hits approximately 400,000 tonnes per annum.

Attendees proposed several measures to help local cashew producers and exporters iron out snags and develop a sustainable cashew sector, which included providing preferential credit loans to exporters, and creating a closer link between farmers and processors.

They also stressed the need to apply advanced technology in cashew production and processing, offer farmers incentive loans, and build up an annual mechanism for cashew prices.


Thứ Sáu, 19 tháng 12, 2014

Vietnam: Cashew exports seen at $2 bln in 2014

Thu Dec 18, 2014

Vietnam Economic Times - Vietnam's cashew exports may hit $2 billion this year, with shipments value as of Dec. 15 hitting a record $1.93 billion, or an increase of 22.6 percent from the same period a year earlier, the Vietnam Economic Times newspaper reported, citing the Vietnam Cashew Association.

Despite strong exports value, profit of cashew companies fell due to rising input costs, the report said.


Guinea-Bissau to increase cashew exports

December 18, 2014

The government of Guinea-Bissau wants declared cashew exports to increase from 150,000 to 200,000 tons per year, the country’s Trade Minister said noting that exports should be as close as possible to the country’s total production.“Guinea-Bissau produces more than 250,000 tons per year, but exports only about 150,000 tons. You need to create objective conditions so exports are as transparent and clear as possible,” said Serifo Embaló, cited by Portuguese news agency Lusa.

Several players from the cashew sector, the main export crop in Guinea-Bissau, gathered Thursday and Friday in Bissau to discuss strategies to monetize trade in the product.The meeting was organised by the Ministry of Trade and brought together farmers, small traders who buy cashews from nut producers, exporters, banks, the police and government.According to Embaló, the government wants to hear all stakeholders in the sector on the strategies to use so that, next year, the country can export at least 200,000 tons of cashews.

In the last cashew marketing year (April to September) over 70,000 tons were exported abroad from neighbouring countries, due to smuggling, said Embaló.According to government figures cashews are the main source of income for more than 80 percent of Guinea’s rural population.


India: Sensational Upswing in Raw Cashew but Sellers Also in Trouble

Dec. 16, 2014

Sudden and spectacular jump in the raw cashew is certainly not in the interest of the Industry. When the Brazilian Real is plummetting and the Indian forex is also in uncertainty, both exporters and importers might face the cosequenceses of this kind of unnatural rise.
- When the imported inventory arrives, releasing may become a problem
 Bull Rumor – Tanzanian Raw cashew is Trading nearly $1500/Ton/180 counts/India
 Bear Romor – Some Importers have cancelled import commitments of above $1400/Ton/180 counts due to Rupee depreciation.
Source: World Cashew