Increase in day temperatures has led to low yield of Cashews in parts of India

Vendors in Tagarapuvalasa are finding it difficult to make both ends meet

With cashew prices increasing steeply this year, vendors of Tagarapuvalasa, about 40 km from here, known for selling crunchy, neat and freshly roasted cashew on the highway between Visakhapatnam and Vizianagaram, are finding less number of takers.

Known for its yummy taste due to roasting traditionally in pots, a handful of vendors selling cashew nuts produced locally and from the famed Palasa-Kasibugga region on the Andhra-Odisha border since generations, are finding it difficult to make both ends meet.

Fall in yield

All the members of vendor families are engaged in procuring as well as roasting and selling cashew nuts along with other dry fruits at shops located on one side of the highway. Tourists generally stop their vehicles near the shops and buy nuts for their immediate consumption as well as for gifting neatly packed products to their near and dear.

“Fall in crop yield during last season has led to increase in price of ‘pot roast cashew’ (as it is called locally) at Rs. 850 per kg — an increase of Rs. 150 over the last season. Even high-quality cashew procured from Palasa area is now priced at Rs. 900 to Rs. 1,000 from last season’s Rs. 600 per kg,” Palisetty Raju, one of the leading pot roast cashew shop owners, told The Hindu .

He said ‘konda cashew,’ as some call it, is in high demand due to its unique flavour and taste. Locally grown cashew is used for roasting on the pots. Crop fall in Andhra Pradesh and Odisha is attributed to the devastation caused to the cashew groves by Cyclone Hudhud.

The vendors say increase in day temperatures has led to low yield. Heat generated during day results in loss of moisture during flowering. Processing units in north Andhra are now facing crisis with many shutting down their production due to imposing of import duty on cashew nuts. Due to short-production, many import cashew nuts from African countries.

source: The Hindu