The commercial cultivation of cashew is carried out in eight states of our country, mainly on the western and eastern coast, and is also cultivated in some areas of Assam, Chhattisgarh, Gujarat, Meghalaya, Nagaland and Tripura.
Cashewis cultivated in the eastern and western coastal areas of India. Maharashtra, Goa, Karnataka, Kerala, Tamil Nadu, Andhra Pradesh, Orissa and West Bengal are the main producers of cashew nuts in India. The state with the highest production of cashew nuts is Maharashtra, followed by Andhra Pradesh, Orissa and Karnataka.
India produces approximately 23% of the world's cashew nuts exported and India is the second largest consumer of cashew nuts. Cashew nuts are edible, kidney-shaped nuts, rich in oil and protein, and are roasted and peeled before eating. India has been the leading exporter of the world trade in shelled cashew nuts, accounting for more than 15% of the world's cashew nut exports over the past four years. Tamil Nadu is the sixth largest exporter of cashew nuts, while Kerala is the fifth largest exporter of cashew nuts in the country.
Farmers with small and medium-sized properties who grow cashew nuts are turning to other crops due to a variety of factors. The south has also marked its importance in the growth of cashew nuts and Kerala is one of the names to mention for it. Even with the basic price of the raw material and the minimum yield, it is possible to earn a decent income from cashew nuts in their raw form. Many farmers try to process cashew nuts locally on their farms, but there are limitations in this regard and quality problems that can reduce the price of cashew nuts if they are not processed properly.
Today, Vietnam is the world's largest exporter of cashew nuts, with 2,500,000 metric tons per year. Today, Tamil Nadu exports more than 71000 metric tons per year, while Kerala exports around 88000 metric tons of cashew nuts. Cashew nuts that farmers sell at the local market as raw products are priced at 90 to 100 rupees per kilo. While cashew nuts in India appear to be plentiful, there are reasons to import cashew nuts from other countries.
The lack of labor, the change in policies, etc., have changed the trend in the production and export of cashew nuts over a period of time. To keep up with the increase in domestic and foreign demand for cashew nuts (the country is the largest consumer of cashew nuts in the world and the second largest exporter of cashew nuts), Indian companies have recently invested in the purchase of large plantations and in the financing and management of processing facilities in Africa. Most importers do this to process the cashew nut and then export the product to Europe and other countries where prices are much higher. Indian cashew nuts are cultivated in western and eastern coastal areas and further inland in parts of Karnataka and Madhya Pradesh.
Because of labor, processing and price, farmers find it difficult to get the desired price for cashew nuts at the local market.