Europe - Grade Specification

Apart from the above said standards, the United Nations Economic Commission for Europe (UNECE) has specifications for cashew kernels.

United Nations Economic Commission for Europe (UNECE) standards:

According to UNECE standards, kernels are classified into different classes based on the quality and they are classified into different grades based on their size and forms.

Classification based on quality:
Classification based on size and form:

1. Wholes: Whole kernels of characteristic shape. The presence of a small hole at the proximal end of the kernel or a central split or crack is not considered a defect.


2. Brokens: they are kernels in which one eighth or more of the original kernel is broken off. Brokens are further divided as:

Butts : Kernels of not less than 3/8th of a whole kernel, which have been broken crosswise, but the cotyledons are still naturally attached.

Splits : Kernels split lengthwise naturally.

Pieces : Kernels, which are broken into more than two pieces. They are further divided based on their sizes.

Europe - Tolerance limits

Kernels of this grade should be completely free from infestation, insect damage, mould, rancidity, adhering testa and objectionable extraneous matter. Scraped and partially shriveled kernels are also permitted provided such scraping/shrivelling does not affect the characteristic shape of the kernel.

Note: Rancidity is to be de Rancidity is to be determined as free fatty acid and/or peroxide value. The maximum limit tolerated for free fatty acid is 1% (expressed as oleic acid) and for peroxide, the maximum tolerated is 5 meq /kg (mill equivalents of oxygen per kilogram), both on the basis of extracted oil.