Cashew nut production in the world’s top grower Ivory Coast will cross 800,000 tonnes to set a new record but prices have been hit by the Covid-19 pandemic, an official said Monday.
“We have beaten in 2020 the records from preceding years. The largest quantity we have produced up until now was 760,000 tonnes in 2018,” Adama Coulibaly, the head of the Cotton and Cashew Council of Ivory Coast, told AFP.
“This year we’re going to exceed 800,000 tonnes and nudge at the mark of 900,000 tonnes,” Coulibaly said.
Nevertheless, a bumper crop will be of no benefit for marketing and sales, because of the global health crisis.
“Coronavirus has had a negative impact on the marketing of the cashew nut, which has seen a drop in prices internationally,” Coulibaly said.
“Before the coronavirus, offers made to Ivory Coast were $1,300 (1,106 euros) per tonne, today we sell with difficulty at between $800 and $900 per tonne.”
The 2018-2019 season resulted in a production of 634,000 tonnes, against 761,000 the previous year, a decrease of 17 per cent.
“We have an extremely positive dynamic in terms of production. We need to bring the same dynamic approach to processing, because it is in processing that there is added value,” he said.