Commodities

Demand revival in India may lift cashew prices

V Sajeev Kumar Kochi | Updated on January 13, 2021 Published on January 13, 2021

Cashew consumption in India has rebounded, thanks to improved corporate buying, better business environment and rise in marriages, functions and festivals in many upcountry consuming markets.

If this trend continues, the sector can expect a quick and smart revival of cashew demand, said Pankaj N Sampat of Samsun Traders.

Demand will continue to be strong helped by reasonable prices, he added.

Raw cashew nut (RCN) inventory for Q1 processing is limited, said Sampat. If there is an increase in demand, the sector could see a rush for early arrivals of 2021 crop which is expected to hit the market in March and RCN prices will move higher, added Sampat.

Currently, RCN prices are ruling at $1,400-1,500 per tonne. Kernel prices for W320, the main traded grade, is hovering in the range of $2.80-3.10 FOB Vietnam and $3.30-3.60 FOB India.

“If the Indian revival is sustained and if the growth trend in other markets continues, the sector expects a gradual rise in kernel prices post-harvest,” said Sampat.

Covid uncertainty

On the global trend, he said that uncertainty has increased after the recent Covid-related developments in Europe. If things worsen, it could impact the 2021 African crop.

Pratap Nair, Managing Partner, Vijayalakshmi Cashew Company, said that the starting of the crop season in India would further boost the domestic market. Because of lower prices, consumption would be higher this year. The export demand was subdued last year even as West Asia continued to be the biggest importer of Indian cashew by overtaking the US.Vietnam could tap overseas markets dominated by India as it did not shut down cashew processing factories in the lockdown, he said.

Cashew Export Promotion Council figures reveal that shipments to the US market during April to November 2020 was 1,460 tonnes valued at ₹84.25 crore, while to West Asian countries during the period was 11,463 tonnes on a value of ₹661.93 crore. The figure during the corresponding period last year to the US was 3,519 tonnes valued at ₹189.89 crore and for West Asia, it was 16,084 tonnes at ₹910 crore.

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Published on January 13, 2021
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