Cashew farmers concern about price drop

Farmers in Binh Phuoc Province have started to enter the harvest season of cashew crop. This year, they are expected to have a bumper crop, but a sharp fall in the price of cashew nuts has made them concern.
A cashew field in Dong Tam Commune in Dong Phu District in Binh Phuoc Province. (Photo: SGGP)
A cashew field in Dong Tam Commune in Dong Phu District in Binh Phuoc Province. (Photo: SGGP)

The province has an area of 134,000 hectares of cashew trees, mainly in Bu Dang, Dong Phu, and Bu Gia Map districts and 75,000 households live on cashew trees. Most cashew fields flowered simultaneously and bore fruit at a high rate and farmers have been rushing to enter the harvest season.

This cashew crop, Mr. Dieu Minh, a farmer in Minh Hung Commune in Bu Dang District, spent VND40 million on plant protection drugs and fertilizer for his three-hectare cashew field. In previous crops, his cashew field gave low yield due to pests and diseases. Therefore, since the beginning of this crop, he has focused on improving his cashew field. The weather was fairly favorable this year so the fruit-bearing rate was high. Just at the very beginning of the harvest season, he has collected 400 kilograms of fresh cashew nuts. The productivity is around 700 kilograms per hectare compared to the last crop. By the end of this crop, his cashew field is expected to yield 10 tons of cashew nuts. In comparison with the previous crops, the productivity of this crop is fairly high, at an average of more than 3 tons per hectare.

The eight-hectare cashew field of Mr. Trinh Thanh in Dong Tam Commune in Dong Phu District is expected to produce around 12 tons of fresh cashew nuts this crop.

Meanwhile, the price of fresh cashew nuts fluctuated around VND28,000 per kilogram, depending on each place. According to farmers, the current buying level was VND10,000-VND12,000 per kilogram lower than the same period last year.

According to Mr. Nguyen Van Sinh, a trader in Tan Thanh Commune in Dong Xoai City, the price of cashew nuts dropped drastically at the beginning of the harvest season as the export of finished cashew nuts has been facing difficulties. Cashew processing and producing enterprises have been promoting the consumption of products made from cashew nuts in the domestic market.

On the other hand, the inventory of raw cashew nuts bought from African countries, India, and Cambodia, remained high. Due to the excessive supply of cashew nuts, the price of cashew nuts is forecast to continue to decline further in the future. Therefore, Vietnamese enterprises have reduced or even halted importing cashew nuts from African countries and India, said Mr. Sinh.

According to the Department of Agriculture and Rural Development of Binh Phuoc Province, the province has harvested more than 10 percent of total production. This year, farmers enjoy a bumper crop with average productivity at 1.5 tons per hectare. However, the cashew price is not good as the price of cashew nuts is low, consumption is poor and the market continuously changes. In addition, farmers in Cambodia are also harvesting cashew nuts at this time. Especially, China, the main cashew nut export market, has been suffering the Covid-19 outbreak.