India to brand its cashew better as exports fall
AS INDIA’S CA SHEW export heads for one of the worst falls in recent times, the industry is planning a branding exercise to promote Indian cashew.
The data of Cashew Export Promotion Council of India(CEPCI) shows about 32 per cent decline in shipments in the six months to September in 2018-19 from a year ago at 30,805 tonnes. The revenue is also down by 32 per cent at Rs 2,135 crore for the period despite a marginal increase in unit value.
Indian cashew has lost its dominance in the US, hitherto its biggest market, to Vietnam, which has been able to increase its share by selling at lower prices. “Vietnam now accounts for 76 per cent of the cashew imports to the US, where India was the major supplier,’’ said RK Bhoodes, chairman of CEPCI.
Vietnam cuts cost by employing extensive mechanisation. “Vietnam sells 20 cents per pound less than Indian rates. But in terms of quality, the Indian nuts are superior,’’ Bhoodes explained.
The cashew industry is planning to promote Indian brand of cashew at premium level to revive Indian cashew’s earlier glory in the US market. “We are looking at emotional connect in marketing with tags like ‘If you buy Indian cashew you will support 1 million workers,’’ he said.
CEPCI will place this suggestion at the global cashew summit in India to be held in February along with other demands such as financial support for the industry as rising cost of production has forced closure of many processing factories in Kerala and measures to control dumping of imported cashew kernels in the Indian market which is currently the largest consumer of cashew.