Nuts

Cashews: processors call for government intervention

April 19, 2023 at 10:57 AM , Der AUDITOR
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HANOI. A change is increasingly emerging in Vietnamese cashew imports. Instead of complete raw nuts, more and more pre-processed kernels from African origins are being imported - a development that is putting processors in Vietnam on high alert.

Good export development

The latest data from the Vietnamese customs office show that cashew exports are developing in a thoroughly positive direction. According to the data, a total of 122,000 mt of cashews worth USD 708 million were shipped overseas in Q1 of 2023, representing a year-on-year increase of 16.6% in volume and 14.2% in value. However, the average export value was USD 5,826/mt, down 2.1% year-on-year, according to the Vietnam Cashew Association (Vinacas). In addition to its own crop, the Vietnamese cashew industry is still dependent on high imports. In January-February 2023 alone, the country imported 272,000 mt of RCN worth USD 360 million, a whopping 78.2% more than the same period last year, Vinacas said.

Vietnamese industry to be protected

An important change is currently taking place in imports from Africa. Whereas previously complete raw cashew nuts were shipped to Vietnam, more and more countries are acquiring their own machinery for pre-processing, so that now more pre-shelled kernels are being shipped. Vinacas stresses that the import of the pre-processed raw kernels will have long-term consequences for the industry. In particular, the jobs of processors in Vietnam are at stake, while the production of the commodities processed in Africa will increase. According to Vinacas, if opportunities in African producing countries continue to improve, these countries will enter the world market of processed cashews in a few years, competing directly with Vietnam. This will inevitably cost Vietnam market shares. The situation with Cambodia could develop similarly. For this reason, many Vietnamese market players are calling for the Vietnam Trade and Industry Federation to propose to the government an intervention policy on the import of pre-processed cashew kernels in order to protect the domestic industry and reduce competitive pressure.

Cashew kernel prices on the European spot market have declined in recent weeks. Vietnamese cashews, WW320 currently cost 5.85 EUR/kg FCA Spain.

Cashew kernels

Type

EUR/kg

USD/kg

WW320, Vietnam, FCA Spain

5.85

6.42

WW240, Vietnam, FCA Spain

6.60

7.24

W320, FOB India

7.28

7.98

W240, FOB India

7.87

8.63

Trade sources

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