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  • Mechanisation vital for cashew industry: council

    Sep 24th, 2015

    Promoting mechanisation of the cashew processing sector will be the main thrust of the three-day programme being organised in connection with the diamond jubilee celebrations of the Cashew Export Promotion Council of India (CEPCI) at Kochi from September 29.The celebrations, to be held from September 29 to October 1, will be formally inaugurated by Industries Minister P.K. Kunhalikutty at a function to be presided over by CEPCI Chairman T.K. Shahal Hassan Musaliar. Minister for Ports K. Babu will address the function.

    Labour shortage

    At a press conference here on Wednesday, celebrations committee convener R.K. Bhoodes said mechanisation of the processing sector was vital for making the cashew industry more competitive in the face of growing competition from Vietnam in the international kernel market.He said the cashew processing sector, especially in Kerala, was facing serious shortage of labour and in the days to come the problem was poised to worsen. Already a major portion of the processing was being done by migrant labourers. Lack of mechanisation was pushing up the cost of production.

    This made kernels from Kerala highly uncompetitive in the international markets. Mr. Bhoodes said a good majority of the 50 stalls coming up at the diamond jubilee celebrations venue would comprise exhibition of the latest cashew processing machines. Machines even from Vietnam, where processing was highly mechanised, would also be exhibited.He said fears that mechanisation would result in loss of jobs was unfounded. Mechanisation would not only bring about increase in production and reduce cost of production but would also create more jobs since cashew processing mandatorily required a human touch in the final areas of processing to make the product qualified for the export market.CEPCI Executive Director K. Sasi Varma said that a buyer-seller meet was being organised in connection with the celebrations. The inaugural function would comprise special addresses by N.K. Premachandran, MP, and Santosh Kumar Sarangi, Joint Secretary of the Union Ministry of Commerce. Arie Endenbjik from the Netherlands would speak on the subject, ‘Indian cashew: a buyers’ perspective.’Sector facing growing competition from VietnamFete will have expo on latest machines in sector