Nuts

Cashews: traders face the future with concern

May 11, 2022 9:47 AM, Der AUDITOR
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HANOI/NEW DELHI. The harvest is in full swing in the growing countries of the northern hemisphere, but the outcome seems to be disappointingly small. In addition to lower availability, logistics problems and rising production costs are also causing headaches for traders.

Crops in Vietnam and Cambodia disappoint

The cashew harvest is now about halfway through in the northern hemisphere growing countries and Samsons Traders experts report that yields in Vietnam and Cambodia have so far fallen well short of initial expectations. There is also some concern in some parts of India and West Africa, yet losses here appear to have been much smaller.

Vietnam's exports were down in Q1 2022 compared to Q1 2021 - the first time this has happened in several years. Samsons Traders believes this is partly because buyers had stocked up sufficiently in the last two quarters of 2021, and partly because processing was lower due to low cashew kernel prices in early 2022. In addition, logistical challenges remain - pandemic-related labour shortages, congested ports and high freight costs are deterring exporters and buyers.

India's market share down

While cashew kernel prices fell by up to 8% in some cases in Q1, RCN prices actually increased, even though the harvest for the new crop is already underway. This posed certain challenges for producers and made for interesting developments. For example, African kernels were trading at almost the same level as the upper end of the Vietnamese price range and many buyers were willing to pay a premium for good quality, traceability and sustainability. Indian cashew kernels are sold at a higher price than goods from Vietnam and Africa thanks to their excellent quality, but India's market share in the global cashew kernel trade has declined to about 10%, according to Samsons Traders.

Cashew kernels

Type, origin

EUR/kg

USD/kg

WW320, Vietnam, FCA Spain

6.67

7.05

W320, FOB India

7.74

8.18

W240, FOB India

8.36

8.83

Trade sources

Lower availability

The future prospects of the cashew market are marked by uncertainties. Almost all countries are affected by economic problems and inflation, and the situation in Ukraine is causing concern among market players in terms of rising energy costs and declining demand. In addition, Samsons Traders expects availability to be lower this season than in recent years due to small crops. Added to this are rising processing and logistics costs, so that there is currently much to suggest that purchases will decline; however, it remains to be seen how the development will actually turn out in the end.

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