W ("white") - white, pale ivory, pale ash- grey, light yellow.
S (“scorched”) or “lightly blemished” - light brown, light ivory, light ash grey, deep ivory, yellow.
("scorched seconds") or D (“dessert”) - light brown, amber, light blue, deep brown, deep blue, discolored, black spotted, immature, blemished, and stained
- Sun Drying and Storage---> At the Producer Level Raw Cashew Nuts are sun dried for several days.The Raw Cashew Nut is stored in either gunny or sisal bags. Passages should be kept in order to guarantee ventilation.
- Before Processing---> The quality of the raw cashew nut is determined by three key tests before processing: Moisture test, Nut Count Test and Nut turn-out. The kernels are also graded according to their size.
- Cleaning, Roasting and Cooling---> The raw nuts are sieved by hand using mesh sieve. After that The
raw cashew nut are roasted for approximately 30 minutes and left to cool for 12 – 15 hours.
- Hygiene Practices---> Good Hygienic & Manufacturing practices should be respected through the whole processing chain.
- Criteria used to determine the quality of cashew nuts include:
- The Out-Turn or Kernel output ratio.
- In general, the out-turn refers to the amount of kernels after de-shelling the nuts. It is expressed in lbs quality, which means the weight of useful kernels weighed in pounds in one 80kg jute bag of Raw cashew nut(RCN).
- The Defective nut rate
- The defective nut rate give the quantity of defective nuts of a sample: pre-mature kernels, spotted kernels, mold eaten kernels, mouldy kernel and brown kernels. To determine this rate, we weigh the kernels and the shells of these two categories. It is express in percentage. A sample with more than 24% of defective nuts is rejected.
- The nut count (number of nuts/kg)
- This is the number of nuts per kilogram. It is expressed in nuts/kg. In practice, it fluctuates between 150 and 240 noix/kg. The smaller the number, the bigger the nuts.
- Combined with the out-turn, the nut count gives information about the kernel sizes that we might get after shelling.
- The moisture content
- It is expressed as a percentage and associated with storage. During harvest to shelling, the recommended rate is 10% to prevent mold and a minimum of 6% to prevent weight loss.
- Other factors include;
- Global harvest yields and harvest seasons (peak or low) - Depending on harvest seasons for different countries, prices may change due to global saturation or low supply.
- Trade policies or government intervention in production countries