Cashew industry’s years of high growth slows down

After obtaining high growth rates in the last 10 years, Vietnam’s cashew industry’s growth slowed in 2022. The multi-billion-dollar export item is predicted to see a low growth rate this year also.

Chair of the Vietnam Cashew Association (Vinacas) Nguyen Van Cong said at the Vietnam International Cashew Conference on February 27 that cashew production and supply activities around the globe and in Vietnam are facing difficulties. The growth of the industry has been seriously affected because of lower demand and challenges in the global material market.

Vinacas’ executive committee has proposed setting the cashew export target at $3.1 billion in 2023, which means a modest increase of $30 million compared with 2022.

Ta Quang Huyen, chair of Hoang Son 1 JSC, said cashew nut exports of the company have dropped by 17-18 percent. Cashew nuts now have to compete with other nuts such as walnuts and almonds. Even when cashew nut prices are higher than other nuts, retailers also focus on distributing other kinds of nuts to make profits.

Vinacas cited statistics from the General Department of Customs (GDC) that as of the end of December 2022, Vietnam had exported 519,782 tons of cashew nuts, worth $3.08 billion, which meant a decrease of 10.3 percent in quantity and 15.1 percent in value.

With the results, the cashew industry could not fulfill its export plan of $3.2 billion worth of cashew nuts last year.

Vietnam’s largest cashew-nut markets in 2022 were the US, China and the Netherlands. Vietnam’s cashew exports to the 10 largest markets decreased in 2022, while exports to the UAE, Arab Saudi and Israel increased in quantity, by 42.8 percent, 44.9 percent and 10.4 percent, respectively.

Vietrade (Vietnam Trade Promotion Agency) Director Vu Ba Phu said that building and administration of product and business brands play an important role, which is necessary to optimize brand value of Vietnam’s cashew industry.