There are over 250 processing units in the industry, processing and roasting cashew nuts. Over 1,000 people work in this cluster, which is worth Rs.14 crore. The major markets for the sale of the roasted cashewnuts are Uttar Pradesh, West Bengal, Bihar and New Delhi.
“All the processing units in this industry are small and micro firms. The industrialists face several problems in the processing of cashewnuts, the most important of them being that the lack of availability of raw cashewnuts. It is a seasonal product, and its yield decides its prices, ” said Sreenath, an industrialist.
Moreover, there is a lot breakage of the nuts while processing and roasting them, which ultimately leads to losses for the manufacturers,” Sreenath added. “Only 10% of the nuts are procured from local farmers, while we have to buy the rest from other states like Andhra Pradesh, Tripura, Meghalaya and Odisha,” he said.
“The cost of the procurement of raw cashewnuts is very high. The state government should set a minimum support price for them, so that the farmers can charge only the recommended prices,” stated Monish Chatterjee, another manufacturer.
“There are no opportunities for export in the indsutry. There should be an association that puts forward the demands of the industrialists before the government and follows them up dedicatedly,” he said.