CBT uproots exploitative, illegal cashewnut trade

DAR ES SALAAM: THE Cashewnut Board (CBT) has said the introduced cashewnut market auctions have significantly helped to uproot exploitative and illegal cashewnut trade dubbed as ‘Kangomba’ in the southern regions.

The board insisted that this strategic initiative aims to free cashewnut farmers in the country from the grips of the unlawful cashew traders.

Speaking at a press conference in Dar es Salaam on Monday, the CBT Director General Francis Alfred, emphasised the significance of the cashewnut market auctions, saying it was strategically introduced to safeguard the interest of the cashewnut market.

He emphasised that Tanzania offers competitive prices for cashews compared to other African cashew-producing nations.

Mr Alfred said that to understand that Tanzania is now farmer-friendly, one should compare the cashews prices in Tanzania with other countries.

“Benin sells cashews at 0.66 US dollars (about 1,650/-) per kilogramme, Nigeria at 0.58 US dollars (about 1,450/-) and Burkina Faso at 0.42 US dollars (about 1,050/-),” he said. In Tanzania the price ranges between 1,900 and 2,190/- per kilo of cashew.

He said that based on these price comparisons, Tanzania is among the highest-paying countries for cashew nuts, demonstrating the government’s commitment to uplifting cashew nut farmers.

Mr Alfred further explained that the cost of cashew production per kilogramme is 1,450/-, with 800/- subsidy provided by the government. This ensures that farmers are not operating at a loss.

He stressed that debates on prices offered for cashews were allowed but they  should not involve distortion of facts. Mr Alfred was referring to the claims made by some politicians in their political platforms that farmers were not being paid the rightful price for cashews.

Mr Alfred further explained that the transportation cost per kilogramme ranges from 30/- to 35/-, ensuring that farmers’ expenses do not exceed 300/-.

He also stated that the government’s goal is to ensure that all cashews are processed within the country by 2030.

He said that the so-called “kangomba” was an exploitative market, and the government introduced the new procedure to put an end to such unregulated practices.

In another development, Mr Alfred mentioned that all cashews from southern regions, including Mtwara and Lindi, were  now shipped through the Mtwara Port.

He added that there is a monthly schedule for ships in November, facilitating the transportation of cashews.

“We have allowed the transportation of cashews through the Mtwara port due to improvements made by the government at the port,” Mr Alfred stated.

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