Cashew exports in the first six months of the year reached 67,000 tonnes worth US$499 million, an increase in value, according to the Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development.
Although the figures represent an increase of 17.3 per cent in value, they represent a decline of 16.4 per cent in volume. In June alone, exports reached 13,000 tonnes worth $100 million. The average export price of cashews from January to June was $7,915 a tonne, a record high.
The consumption of cashew in the US, China, the EU and the Arabic zone has increased rapidly while the world supply of raw cashew had fallen this year due to poor harvests, the Vietnam Economic Times reported.
Viet Nam’s cashew industry is facing a shortage of raw cashew for processing as the country, the world’s leading cashew exporter, has had a poor harvest this year.
The industry estimates that it will export about 190,000 tonnes of cashew nuts this year, down 4,000 tonnes against last year because of lower output. It plans to import 300,000 tonnes of raw cashew for processing.
However, the quantity of raw cashews imported from West African countries has been lower because those countries have experienced a decline in production this year.
To have raw cashew for processing, Vietnamese exporters are exchanging rice for raw cashews with Nigeria and Cote d’Ivoire in order to have a total of 200,000 tonnes of imported raw cashews for this year.
While domestic processors are struggling to buy raw cashews, a large quantity of raw cashews and preliminary processed cashews have been exported to China, which is buying them at a high price. Vietnamese exporters should limit the export of raw cashew and preliminary processed cashew to China and increase processed cashew exports to China, said market experts.