In W38 in the cashew landscape, India's cashew consumption, which peaked in 2022, is declining due to higher prices and reduced availability. Despite this, it remains above the five-year average. The first seven months of 2023 have seen a 15% drop in imports, with total imports expected to reach 1.1 to 1.2 million metric tons (mmt), indicating a further slowdown in domestic consumption.
Traditionally the world's leading cashew consumer, India has experienced a shift in consumption patterns. Reduced consumption in the United States (US) and Europe, primarily due to post-pandemic high living costs, contrasts with increased consumption in India, driven by cashews' use as a food ingredient. Cashews have gained popularity in India as ingredients in savory dishes, desserts, and confectioneries. Over 60% of India's cashew consumption is now indirect, and this popularity has spread beyond southern states.
Indian industries accepting slightly lower-quality cashew nuts have seen significant consumption increases. Cashews' global affordability has further boosted their use in various dishes. India's cashew consumption reached over 400 thousand metric tons (mt) during 2022. However, 2023 has experienced a decline in demand due to rising living costs, inflation, and higher cashew prices. Imports for the first seven months of 2023 dropped 15% year-on-year (YoY) but remained 25% above the five-year average, with projections indicating imports could reach 1.1 to 1.2 mmt for the year. Domestic production also slightly decreased to around 650 thousand mt. Cashew prices in India's wholesale markets have risen by 7% since the start of 2023. As prices continue to increase due to global demand and supply constraints, India's domestic cashew demand is forecasted to decrease further.
The province of Nampula in Mozambique anticipates a 5% increase in cashew production for the current campaign, targeting over 82 thousand tons of nuts sold. A chemical treatment campaign is underway to achieve this goal, with approximately 4.5 million cashew trees already treated. Favorable flowering conditions have contributed to expectations of a good production season. Nampula is the leading province in cashew production, contributing around 40% to the national annual production estimated at 157 thousand tons, with approximately 15 million cashew trees in its farming park.