The cashew nut is a popular dessert nut, eaten out of hand, with other mixed nuts and used in baking and confections. Sixty percent of cashews are consumed as salted nuts. It is also made into cashew butter and nut milk. The nut is high in protein, oil and also vitamins, especially thiamin. The nut makeup is 47% fat, 21% protein, and 22% carbohydrate.
Three main cashew products are traded on the international market: raw nuts, cashew kernels and cashew nut shell liquid (CNSL). A fourth product, the cashew apple is generally processed and consumed locally. The raw cashew nut is the main commercial product of the cashew tree, though yields of the cashew apple are eight to ten times the weight of the raw nuts. Raw nuts are either exported or processed prior to export.
Cashew is a versatile, though paradoxical nut! Beginning as a poor man’s crop, it ends up as the rich man’s favourite snack-food all over the world. Cashew has gained significant social importance in India as a major foreign exchange earner bringing in foreign exchange of around US$ 500 million per annum. Cashew kernels are a high value luxury commodity with sales growing at a steady rate of 7% each year and there is every likely hood that the market will continue to remain strong. Thus, due to demand it is a good project for entrepreneurs to invest.
Few Indian Major Players are as under
· Amigo Exports Ltd.
· M A C Agro Inds. Ltd.
· M P S Food Products Ltd.
· Maiam Global Foods Ltd.
· Nature Bio-Foods Ltd.
· Olam Agro India Pvt. Ltd.
· Padmavathi Cashews & Coffee Ltd.
· Patel Food Product Ltd.
· Pioneer Cashew Inds. Ltd.
· Tropical Foods Ltd.