THE huge global demand for cashew
nuts at international markets around the world could make millionaires of
Nigerian farmers who are serious with cashew nuts export, as the crop has the
potential to generate N100 billion annually to Nigerian economy in the next 50
This potential has increased
cashew production in Africa and other nations of the world as well as
increased exportation to various parts of the world.
Cashew, which is an important
industrial and export crop in Nigeria is believed to have provided livelihood
for over 300,000 families and generated about $253 million to Nigeria’s
economy in 2015.
Countries demanding cashew nuts
from Nigeria include United States of America (USA), Indian, China, Vietnam,
Brazil and several European countries. The demand for cashew nuts is huge in
these countries because of its several uses. They use cashew nuts for paste,
butter, milk, salad, curry, cookies, chicken, burfi and powder. The main cashew
products are raw nuts, cashew kernels, cashew apple and cashew nut shell
liquid, which are all traded in the international market.
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),
Speaking on the steps to boost
export of cashew nut in Nigeria, the National Publicity Secretary, National
Cashew Association of Nigeria (NCAN), Mr. Sotonye Anga, said the first step
was for exporters to ensure their cashew nuts are well dried, tested okay,
packed in jute bags and containerised, and then taken straight to port.
He added: “Usually when it comes
to a shipping document, the document would be quality certificate, ISO
sanitary certificate, fumigation certificate and certificate of origin including
the bill of lading. These are the documents that form shipping documents and
the third agency such as the NDLEA, NAFDAC, the Customs have to intervene to
check the products to ensure that everything is okay.”
He further said: “There is huge
market for Nigerian cashew because of its unique taste that has to do
exclusively with environment. More uses for it is being found everyday, which
is what is driving the demand and the appetite for cashew is also increasing.”
However, he said the annual global
demand for the commodity far exceeds the supply, which means there is enough
room for new players in the cashew nut exportation business. The demand for
cashew globally is about 3 million metric tonnes and total supply is about 2
million metric tonnes, so demand gap is about 1 million metric tonnes that has
to be filled.
He explained that Nigeria needs to grow about 53 million new cashew trees to take its place in the world of cashew production chart, adding that it would create 2000 jobs and the fastest millionaires by growing 53 million cashew trees across the country.
Anga added that, “to achieve
this, there is need for N10 billion investment and the revenue from this
investment every year will be N100 billion annually for the next 50 years.