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  • Cashew processors seek govt’s intervention

    Sep 11th, 2015

    The National Cashew Association of Nigeria, NCAN, has appealed to the government for logistics support and intervention in cashew processing in order to attract more investors.The Publicity Secretary of the Association, Mr. Anga Sotonye, who made the appeal said that Nigerian cashew processors had been operating below 30 per cent of the combined installed capacity of 48,000 tonnes. He attributed the decline to the high cost of procuring raw cashew nuts, among other factors.

    The scribe said that cashew nuts now sold between N170, 000 and N200, 000 per ton, lamenting the adverse effect of the situation such as massive job loss and closing down of some processing plants.According to him, high costs of doing business and zero incentive have led to massive job loss along cashew value chain as many cashew factories have shutdown, saying cashew processors were endangered needed to be protected and strengthened.He remarked that the sub-sector needed government’s support in order to encourage competitiveness among the cashew processors. He said the processors were demanding N50, 960 ($260) per ton investment incentive to strengthen the sub-sector. “Strengthening cashew processing in Nigeria is a step that will contribute to the nation’s economic development.

    We call on the Nigerian Government to approve an investment incentive of $260 per ton for cashew processing in Nigeria. “We need to understand that cashew farmers need guaranteed markets to remain in business. Whenever a cashew processor processes a metric ton of raw cashew, it translates to over 200 jobs,” he said.He explained that more than 70 per cent of workers in cashew processing facilities are women, who are trained to de-shell the cashew. They also delicately peel and pack the cashew kernels and get them ready for the export markets. According to him, the country presently has seven cashew processing plants, among which are Olam, Foodpro, Esteema Diamond, Abod success, KD Foods, ACET Nigeria and Valency and they are members of the NCAN.

    He added that the association had privately invested N12billion into cashew processing in Kwara, Kaduna, Ogun and Lagos. He said that cashew processors were selling to the same markets, hence the need for government to protect cashew processors and make them better competitors globally.Sotonye, who retorted that the processors all over the world sold their products to the same international markets under the same price regime, said that the countries that offer the best investment incentives to cashew processors rule in the cashew world. The secretary disclosed that Nigeria was presently producing 144,000 metric tonnes of raw cashew nuts.According to him, this means that available raw nuts for cashew processors still has one of the highest processing cost at N101, 920 ($520) per ton without investment incentives from the government. He informed that the government of Mozambique gave N24, 696 ($126) per ton investment incentive for cashew processing while India gave N16, 268 ($83) per ton. This, he said, brought cost of processing cashew to N52, 528 ($268) per ton in Mozambique, N49, 784 ($254) per ton in India and N42, 532 ($217) per ton in Vietnam.