India is the largest producer and exporter of cashew nuts in the world. South Indian cashews are famous for its good quality, taste and appearance. Indian cashews are consumed in as many as 60 countries all over the world.
Cashew nut is mostly consumed as snacks. It is also used in cooking, candy bar, sweets and pastry. The most prominent vitamins in cashew are vitamin A, D and E. There is no cholesterol in cashew nuts since it a plant product. Cashew kernel is a rich source of minerals like calcium, phosphorus and iron. The minerals in cashew nuts are good for human nervous system.
Raw cashew nuts along with cashew apple are collected carefully from the farms. Raw cashew nuts are removed from cashew apples. Raw cashew nuts are processed in different ways to obtain the cashew kernels. Sun drying, drum roasting, oil bath roasting and steaming are famous cashew nuts processing methods used all around the world.
Cashew Nut Shell Liquid (CNSL) is a versatile product of the cashew industry. CNSL is extensively used in polymer based industries such as friction linings, paints and varnishes, lamination resins, rubber compounding resins, cashew cements, polyurethane base polymers, surfactants, epoxy resins, foundry chemicals and intermediates for chemical industry, pesticides. In India, it is used as ayurvedic medicine to cure cracks in feet.
The cashew market is rapidly evolving. West and South Africa in particular are their utmost to put their product on the world map and are quite successful in doing so.
India, as we mentioned it still plays a leading role. Countries like Brazil, Indonesia and Vietnam in particular increasingly present themselves as major exporters of shelled cashew nuts.
China is also coming up. What China's arrival on the market will mean, is difficult to assess right now. Given their performance in other areas, it would be wise not to underestimate their future influence.