Cashew Exporting Countries, 5 Countries You Should Know About

Cashew Exporting Countries

5 Cashew Exporting Countries You Should Know About

Cashew nuts are one of the most popular and nutritious snacks in the world. They are rich in protein, healthy fats, minerals, and antioxidants. But where do cashews come from and who are the major exporters of this delicious nut?

Cashews are the seeds of the cashew tree, a tropical evergreen that grows mainly in Africa, Asia, and South America. The cashew nut is enclosed in a hard shell that is attached to a fleshy fruit called the cashew apple. The shell contains a caustic substance that can cause skin irritation, so it has to be removed before the nut can be consumed or processed.

According to the World Top Exports website, the global exports of cashew nuts (in shell) amounted to $6.3 billion in 2022, down by 15.2% from 2018. The top five exporters of cashew nuts (in shell) in 2022 were:

  • Vietnam: $3.21 billion (51% of total exports)
  • Cote d’Ivoire: $1.07 billion (17% of total exports)
  • India: $495 million (7.9% of total exports)
  • Ghana: $454 million (7.2% of total exports)
  • Nigeria: $322 million (5.1% of total exports)

1. Vietnam

Vietnam is the world’s largest exporter of cashew nuts, as well as the largest importer and processor. Vietnam imports raw cashews from Africa and other countries, then shells, roasts, and packages them for domestic consumption and export. Vietnam has a competitive advantage in cashew processing due to its low labor costs, advanced technology, and high quality standards.

2. Cote d’Ivoire

Cote d’Ivoire is the world’s second-largest exporter of cashew nuts and the largest producer in Africa. Cote d’Ivoire has a favorable climate and soil for cashew cultivation, as well as a large rural population that provides labor for harvesting and shelling. However, most of Cote d’Ivoire’s cashews are exported as raw nuts before deshelling, which limits the value-added potential and income for farmers and processors.

3. India

India is the world’s third-largest exporter of cashew nuts and the largest consumer. India has a long history of cashew cultivation and processing, dating back to the 16th century when Portuguese traders introduced the crop from Brazil. India produces about 10% of the world’s cashews, but imports more than 60% of its raw material from Africa and other countries. India has a large domestic market for cashews, as well as a strong presence in international markets, especially in Europe and North America.

4. Ghana

Ghana is the world’s fourth-largest exporter of cashew nuts and the second-largest producer in Africa. Ghana has been promoting cashew production as a way to diversify its economy, reduce poverty, and enhance food security. Ghana has invested in improving the quality and productivity of its cashew sector, as well as developing processing capacity and market linkages.

5. Nigeria

Nigeria is the world’s fifth-largest exporter of cashew nuts and the third-largest producer in Africa. Nigeria has a huge potential for cashew production, given its vast land area, suitable climate, and abundant labor force. Nigeria also has a growing domestic demand for cashews, especially among the urban middle class. Nigeria faces some challenges in its cashew sector, such as low yields, poor quality, lack of infrastructure, and weak governance.

These are some of the major cashew exporting countries in the world. Cashews are not only tasty and healthy, but also a source of income and livelihood for millions of people across the globe.

Cashew Exporting Countries: Trends and Statistics

Cashew nuts are one of the most popular and nutritious snacks in the world. They are rich in protein, healthy fats, minerals, and antioxidants. Cashew nuts are also used in various cuisines, as well as in the production of cashew butter, cashew oil, and cashew milk.

But where do cashew nuts come from? And how is the global demand for this delicious nut affecting the cashew exporting countries? In this blog post, we will explore some of the trends and statistics of the cashew industry, based on the latest data from 2022.

Top Cashew Exporters in 2022

According to the World’s Top Exports website, the top five cashew exporters in 2022 were:

  • Vietnam: US$2.7 billion (42.4% of total exported cashews)
  • Ivory Coast: $986.9 million (15.6%)
  • India: $359.8 million (5.7%)
  • Ghana: $304 million (4.8%)
  • Netherlands: $265.7 million (4.2%)

These five countries accounted for 72.6% of all cashews exported in 2022, indicating a high concentration of the market. Vietnam was the clear leader, with more than double the export value of the second-ranked Ivory Coast.

The top five cashew importers in 2022 were:

  • United States: US$1.3 billion (20.5% of total imported cashews)
  • Vietnam: $1 billion (15.8%)
  • Germany: $498.9 million (7.9%)
  • Netherlands: $467.9 million (7.4%)
  • China: $436.6 million (6.9%)

These five countries accounted for 58.5% of all cashews imported in 2022, showing a strong demand for this nut in these markets. The United States was the largest importer, followed by Vietnam, which also re-exports processed cashews to other countries.

Cashew Export Trends and Challenges

The global cashew industry has been facing some challenges in recent years, such as climate change, pests and diseases, low productivity, quality issues, price volatility, and trade barriers. These factors have affected the supply and demand of cashews, as well as the income and livelihoods of millions of smallholder farmers who grow cashews in developing countries.

According to Statista, the global export value of cashews (in shell) decreased by 15.2% from 2018 to 2022, from $7.5 billion to $6.3 billion. The average unit price of exported cashews also declined by 7.3% from 2021 to 2022, from $6,708 per ton to $6,216 per ton. This indicates a lower profitability and competitiveness of the cashew sector.

One of the main reasons for this decline is the COVID-19 pandemic, which disrupted the global supply chains and reduced the consumer demand for cashews. The pandemic also affected the labor availability and health of cashew farmers and workers, as well as their access to inputs, markets, and finance.

Another reason is the increasing competition from other nuts, such as almonds, pistachios, walnuts, and macadamias, which have higher yields and quality than cashews. These nuts also have more diversified uses and markets than cashews, which are mainly consumed as snacks or ingredients.

Cashew Export Opportunities and Strategies

Despite these challenges, there are also opportunities and strategies for improving the performance and sustainability of the cashew industry. Some of these include:

  • Increasing the production and productivity of cashews through improved varieties, agronomic practices, pest and disease management, irrigation, mechanization, and digital technologies.
  • Enhancing the quality and value addition of cashews through better post-harvest handling, processing, packaging, branding, certification, and innovation.
  • Expanding the market access and diversification of cashews through trade facilitation, market intelligence, promotion, e-commerce, product development, and new applications.
  • Strengthening the resilience and inclusiveness of the cashew value chain through climate-smart agriculture, social protection, gender equality, youth empowerment, capacity building, policy advocacy, and stakeholder collaboration.

By implementing these strategies, the cashew exporting countries can increase their competitiveness and profitability in the global market, as well as their contribution to food security, nutrition, income generation, employment creation, poverty reduction,
and environmental conservation.


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