Cashews: Vietnam's exports keep growing

May 14, 2024 at 9:58 AM , Der AUDITOR
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HANOI. Vietnam is the largest cashew exporter in the world, and the data for the first quarter of 2024 shows that there is still room for growth. Nevertheless, this market also has challenges to overcome.

Massive increase in exports to China

The General Statistics Office of Vietnam is extremely confident about Vietnam's cashew exports in 2024. Shipments in the first four months of the year are estimated at USD 1.16 billion, which would correspond to an increase of almost 22% compared to the same period last year. The average export price in March was USD 5,354/mt, an increase of 0.3% compared to the previous month, but a decrease of 9.8% compared to March 2023, according to the Vietnam Cashew Association (Vinacas). In addition, the Ministry of Industry and Trade states that exports to most major markets have achieved positive growth, with the exception of the UAE and Saudi Arabia. The increase in exports to China is even in the three-digit range. Vietnam remains number one in cashew exports – more than 75% of the world's cashew kernels are exported by the country, which, unlike many other raw material producers, has the appropriate processing technology. However, other growing countries such as Cambodia and African origins are already following suit.

RCN are becoming scarce

Vinacas states that global cashew consumption is increasing and the favourable prices ensure that Vietnamese exports will continue to grow. Importers in the USA and Europe in particular are stocking up, and the Asian region is benefiting from the fact that shipments from Vietnam are not affected by the unrest in the Red Sea. A problem for Vietnamese processors at the moment is the shortage of RCN and they are forced to buy their raw materials at high prices. The shortage on the market is mainly due to speculation by farmers and some traders who are holding back their goods and waiting for prices to rise before selling them.

Prices rise in India

Vietnam and Cambodia have started the second harvest and some market players therefore prefer to wait and see how the market develops in the near future. Market experts estimate that this second and third harvest could be smaller due to the extremely hot weather, but that total production in 2024 is likely to be the same as last year.

Prices for Indian cashew nuts have also risen in recent weeks. Cashews, W240 currently cost USD 8,555/mt FOB India.

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