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  • Ivory Coast: a difficult campaign for cashew nuts

    Apr 15th, 2024

    This year, farm gate prices vary between 200 and 300 CFA francs per kilo. Problem: Most buyers haven't pre-funded the campaign. Producers therefore continue to store their nuts. Due to a lack of liquidity, the campaign remains timid, note several producers. And local factories, like multinationals, are in a moment of observation. They believe that it is not profitable to buy: prices are much too low compared to production costs, which are exploding. On average, factories lose 170 CFA francs per kilo of processed raw nuts. Furthermore, the quality of nuts currently on the market does not meet the needs of buyers.

    Fragile Ivorian transformers

    This situation only further weakens national processors, who are struggling to compensate for losses, despite support from the State. Several of them have still not received their seed stock which allows them to start purchasing. However, the quality of raw nuts decreases as the days pass. Problems with the supply of raw nuts, difficulties in accessing the banking sector, lack of competitiveness compared to Asian companies… Ivorian processors have a series of handicaps which prevent them from developing solidly. These companies would need support for financing and to cover their losses, at least until they reach a critical size, estimates a player in the sector.

    Despite these difficulties, the Cashew Cotton Council hopes that the bar of 300,000 tonnes of raw nuts processed in Ivory Coast this year will be crossed. At the same time, the regulator began a series of group purchases from producer cooperatives. The objective is twofold: to inject liquidity into the market and to enforce the official price.