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Guinea-Bissau reaps reward as world goes nuts for cashews

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Sustained international call for for cashews has helped Guinea-Bissau’s farmers rake in file costs, however the trade needs a crack at extra income by means of processing the sweetness nut at house.

Demand for cashews has risen 31 % globally during the last decade, in line with the International Nut and Dried Fruit Council (INC), pushed by means of its recognition in Asia and cashews’ symbol as a wholesome element within the West.

“I have never earned as much money as this year,” stated Braima Seidi, a cashew farmer who has amassed sufficient this season to construct a area, acquire a motorcycle, and purchase a tonne of rice for his circle of relatives.

“I always managed about two-and-a-half tonnes, but as the prices were low my income was too,” Seidi stated, celebrating a three-tonne harvest this time.

Cashew nuts develop nestled towards a fruit, and full households in Guinea-Bissau acquire all through harvest season to tug them from the bushes, separate the nuts and pack them into sacks destined for the capital.

The end result are pressed and the liquid that seeps out saved to make juice or ferment one of those wine, whilst the pulp is dried to supply feed for cattle.

In this deeply impoverished west African country, the place 12 % of land is devoted to cashew manufacturing, GDP is projected to be up five.2 % this 12 months, UN Special Representative to Guinea-Bissau Modibo Toure stated in overdue August, thank you partly to the top costs.

– Foreign consumers again –

The file revenues come down to 2 elements: a choice by means of the state to right kind a damaging worth differential with manufacturers in neighbouring Senegal, and the re-engagement of overseas consumers in Bissau’s markets.

President Jose Mario Vaz briefly suspended the sale of the nuts in May after finding that during Casamance, Senegal, cashews have been offered for 1,000 FCFA (1.five euros, $1.eight) in step with kilo, whilst Guinea-Bissau’s farmers have been getting paid part of that at perfect.

Buyers from in a foreign country, briefly absent from native markets, were welcomed again, and Indian, Chinese and Mauritanian brokers have duly despatched costs hovering to at least one,500 FCFA in step with kilo.

This 12 months the amount exported will achieve 200,000 tonnes, up a cast 6 % from 2016, in line with the National Cashew Agency (ANC).

The revenues of manufacturers, in the meantime, are anticipated to jump to $70-80 million from round $40-50 million closing 12 months.

“Never in living memory have the producers’ prices reached this level,” Mamadu Nene Balde, a consultant of the rustic’s farming communities, stated in a contemporary assembly with President Vaz.

– Focus on processing –

Guinea-Bissau is Africa’s third-largest cashew manufacturer after Ivory Coast and Tanzania, and Africa produces 56 % of the world’s cashew crop, in line with the INC.

However, handiest round one % of cashews are processed for intake and for use in cosmetics and trade at the continent, that means Africa is lacking out on a chance for added income.

Guinea-Bissau’s cashews are nearly all exported uncooked to China, India and Vietnam for processing, with simply 20,000 tonnes remodeled at house, together with into biscuits and grilled snacks, by means of a handful of circle of relatives corporations within the former Portuguese colony.

“Our countries export almost all of our crop to other countries, where added value is created,” stated Georgette Taraf, President of the African Cashew Alliance at a gathering in Bissau closing 12 months.

But “Africa has opened its eyes to the potential of the cashew” she stated.

Capturing extra of the processing of cashews would generate each extra jobs and earnings.

But the Guinea-Bissau executive is already playing the well being advantages of cashew exports on its revenues this 12 months, with the 128 million euros raised in export taxes equivalent to almost part of all of the nationwide finances.

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