Saturday, February 28, 2015
The Kerala Cashew Processors and Exporters Association has said that the decision to keep cashew factories closed for three days from March 2 in protest against the “unbearable wage hike” coming into effect from March 1 will not be revoked.
“Still the demand from a section of the trade union leaders that the employers should compensate the workers for denial of work for three days owing to the strike may sound logic. But these leaders should not forget the fact that they too had denied work to the workers on various occasions through hartals declared on political grounds,” he said.
Mr. Nazar said that if the trade unions were prepared to compensate the workers for that loss, the cashew sector employers would only be too happy to compensate the cashew workers for work lost during the three-day strike. The trade unions should act as a model and then ask others to follow suit. The strike had been declared since there was no other go. He said that the cashew industry was a means of livelihood not only to the cashew workers but also for the employers too. But trade union militancy was converting cashew processing an economically unviable activity in Kerala, Mr. Nazar said.
- The Hindu
If you are in the mood for Asian, this easy cashew chicken fried rice is the perfect recipe to satisfy your craving. Inspired by restaurant-style fried rice, this dish is packed with chicken, pineapple, red pepper, peas and toasted cashews. This one pot meal is all you need instead of turning to take-out.
1 lb. chicken breasts, cut into cubes 3 tablespoons vegetable oil, divided 2 eggs, beaten with a dash of soy sauce 1 1/2 cups cubed fresh or canned pineapple 1 large red bell pepper, diced 1/2 cup frozen peas, defrosted 3 green onions, green and white parts, thinly sliced 2 cloves garlic, finely minced 1 tablespoon finely chopped fresh ginger 1/2 cup chopped raw, unsalted cashews 2 cups cooked and chilled rice, white or brown 1 tablespoon plus 2 teaspoons reduced-sodium tamari or soy sauce 1 to 2 teaspoons chili garlic sauce 1 small lime, juiced 1/4 cup fresh cilantro leaves, finely chopped
Step 1: Marinate chicken in 2 teaspoons of soy sauce and freshly ground black pepper and refrigerate for at least 30 minutes.
Step 2: Heat one tablespoon of oil in a large skillet or wok over medium high heat. Add the chicken to the pan and cook until the chicken is no longer pink, about 7 to 8 minutes. Remove from pan and set aside.
Step 3: In the same pan, add a teaspoon of oil and gently scramble the eggs. Scoop the eggs into a bowl and set aside.
Step 4: Add one tablespoon of oil to the pan and add the pineapple and red pepper. Cook, stirring constantly, until the pineapple is caramelized on the edges and the red pepper has softened, about 3 to 5 minutes. Then add the green onion, peas, ginger and garlic. Cook, while stirring constantly, until fragrant, about 30 seconds or longer. Transfer the contents of the pan to your bowl of eggs.
Step 5: Add the remaining two teaspoons of oil to the pan. Pour in the cashews and toast them, stirring constantly, until the cashews smell fragrant and have turned golden brown, about 30 seconds. Add the rice to the pan and stir to combine. Cook, stirring occasionally, until the rice is hot, about 3 minutes.
Step 6: Pour the cooked vegetables and eggs back into the pan with the rice and stir to combine. Season with soy sauce, chili garlic sauce, and lime juice. Taste and adjust seasoning as necessary. Garnish with fresh cilantro.
By: Leah Rodrigues
Recipe courtesy: foodista.com
- 2 russet potatoes (about 1 1/2 pounds)
- 1 Cup bread flour
For Thyme Vinaigrette:
- 2 Tbsp. fresh thyme, leaves only
- 1-2 pinches salt, to taste
- 4 Tbsp. olive oil
- 1 tsp. white wine vinegar
For Lemon Cashew Cream:
- 1 cup water
- 1 1/4 cups cashews
- Zest of 1 lemon
- 1/2-1 tsp. lemon juice
For Thyme Vinaigrette:
- Strip the thyme leaves off their stems into a mortar. Add a pinch or two of salt and grind with the pestle until a rough paste is formed.
- Add oil and vinegar and mix again. Don’t worry if it’s emulsified, it just needs to be mixed. Taste and adjust salt or vinegar as needed. Set aside.
For Lemon Cashew Sauce:
- Place all the ingredients for the cashew cream in a blender and blend on high until thick and smooth. Adjust seasoning if needed.
For the Gnocchi:
- Boil potatoes till soft.
- Peel potatoes and let cool for 10-15 min.
- Push potatoes through ricer or food mill and form a mound on your workstation.
- Adding flour ½ cup at a time knead dough till ball forms.
- Shape the dough into long ½ inch thick ropes.
- Using a bench scraper, cut each rope into ½ inch pieces.
- For final shaping, roll each piece pressing slightly across a fork to form rough surface on top and slight concave underneath.
- Drop each piece into simmering water and cook until 30 seconds after they float to the top.
- Toss lightly with vinaigrette.
- Plate and drizzle with Cashew Sauce.
The cashew industry here has welcomed the decision of the authorities of the Vallarpadam International Container Transhipment Terminal (ICTT) to restore the on-wheel customs clearance facility for raw cashew imports. K.N. Raghavan, Commissioner of Customs at Kochi, formally notified the decision on February 24.
Through the facility, the raw cashew importer can now load the container from the ICTT yard and subject it to Customs clearance there itself, without shifting it to a privately operated container freight station (CFS) yard nearby for Customs checking.
The decision comes in the wake of a delegation from the Cashew Processors and Exporters Association holding talks with the Cochin Port, ICTT, and Customs authorities earlier this month.
Association president A.M. Salahudeen said that restoration of the facility would cut costs by over Rs.9 crore annually for the industry.
Given the economic and social importance of raw cashew imports by way of providing employment to women and also as a major foreign exchange earner, the commodity had enjoyed on-wheel customs clearance facility at ICTT. But in October last year, the facility was withdrawn.
This resulted in all raw cashew import containers arriving at ICTT mandatorily being shifted the CFS yard for Customs clearance.
For the new arrangement, each container was charged Rs.5,000 — the breakup being Rs.2,000 for container transportation charge, Rs.2,000 for loading and unloading, and Rs.1,000 as administrative charges.
Each year more than 3 lakh tonnes of raw cashew are imported through the ICTT annually and that means 16,000 containers.
Mr. Salahudeen said that with the on-wheel customs clearance facility being restored the fee charged has come down to Rs.618 per container.
During talks, the ICTT authorities also agreed to resume operation of the weighbridge inside the terminal complex.
Earlier it used to be moved out for Customs nod
Fee per container down to Rs.618 from Rs.5,000
- The Hindu
The National Cashew Association of Nigeria said on Wednesday that it had signed a N1 billion deal with shipping companies in Nigeria to export cashew nuts.
The national spokesperson of the association, Sotonye Anga, disclosed this in an interview in Lagos.
He said cashew exporters will export 6,700 containers of cashew nuts to Vietnam, India and other Asian countries this year.
"We are pleased with the outcome of the cashew logistics meeting, held on Saturday the February 20 with stakeholders.
"We are giving shipping companies more than 6,700 container loads of cashew nuts for shipment to India, Vietnam, and other Asian countries.
"This translates to $5 million (N1 billion) worth of business which is about One billion naira as our industry wide cost of shipment. In return, we demand from them the best of service.
"We want the best in terms of care in handling our cashew shipments, shorter delivery and transit time at a pocket friendly rate.
"We insist on global best practice for cashew handling and so we will work closely with the shipping companies to come up with an industry friendly programme for cashew exports from Nigeria," Mr. Anga said.
He said that the containers that would convey the cashew nuts would be dressed with double corrugated craft paper.
"Henceforth all 40ft containers carrying cashew nuts from Nigeria will load 26.5 metric tons of cashews.
"They must also carry appropriate number of quality desiccants to absorb moisture and to help us preserve the quality of cashew during transit," he said.
Some of the shippers represented at the meeting included, PIL Ltd, CMA DELMAS and MAERSK LINE among others.
They pledged their full support and advised cashew exporters to fill indemnity forms whenever they use import containers for export.
‘Wage hike for workers notified bypassing all mandatory norms’
If declaring wage-related strikes in the cashew sector used to be the monopoly of trade unions, the tables have now turned. Employers under the banner of Cashew Processors and Exporters Association have now declared a three-day strike in the sector from March 2.
Secretary of the association K.M. Nazar said the strike was in protest against the allegedly arbitrary manner in which the State government had notified the latest wage hike for cashew workers ‘‘which the industry is unable to bear.’’ He said the wage hike was notified bypassing all mandatory norms.
In the past, cashew sector employers were wary of keeping their factories closed because the government was vested with powers under the Kerala Cashew Factories Acquisition (Amendment) Act to take over such factories. But a Supreme Court order earlier this month had termed relevant sections of the Act unconstitutional.
The association leaders alleged that the government had succumbed to trade union militancy following which the Industrial Relations Committee (IRC) had taken the decision to hike the wages. But as per norms, the IRC decision has to be first notified for hearing objections and then placed before the Minimum Wages Advisory Committee.
The government could formally notify the revised wages only as per the recommendations of that committee. But all those mandatory formalities were bypassed and the government arbitrarily declared a 35 per cent wage hike. He said the employers were not in anyway against a justified wage hike.
The association alleged vote-bank politics on the part of the trade unions as the motive behind such a wage hike. The hike would make cashew processed in Kerala highly uncompetitive in the international markets. Cashew was being processed in various States, and in Vietnam too where the processing rates were affordable to the industry. All competed in the same international kernel markets.
The association leaders called upon the State government to freeze the wage hike and conduct a scientific study into the realities of the sector viv-a-vis the competitors and then decide on the wage hike. The three-day strike declared was a token strike. If the government failed to consider the demands, the association would be forced to declare an indefinite strike, Mr. Nazar said.
- The Hindu
Tuesday, February 24, 2015
The Viet Nam Cashew Association (Vinacas) reported that roughly 306,000 tonnes of locally produced cashew kernels were shipped abroad in 2014, generating more than $2 billion and representing an annual increase of 17.4 per cent. Annual revenue grew by 21.9 per cent.
Including the export of by-products, such as shell oil and other value-added products, total industry revenue reached $2.2 billion, Vinacas said, noting that the cashew export price averaged $6,553 per tonne in 2014, up nearly 3.8 per cent from the previous year.
Domestic enterprises also imported around 700,000 tonnes of raw cashew to ensure supplies for processing and export, raising the total volume of processed cashew kernel last year to 1.2 million tonnes, the association said.
Such high figures make the cashew a staple agricultural export of Viet Nam, following rice, rubber, and coffee.
However, Vinacas chairman Nguyen Duc Thanh forecast an array of difficulties in 2015, such as the depreciation of some foreign currencies which would probably affect exports, India and China's new cashew processing industries in Africa, and stricter hygiene and quality requirements.
To further expand markets, Vinacas plans to step up promotional activities in the US, help its member firms improve product quality and hygiene, and organise an international cashew conference this year.
It targets 350,000 tonnes of cashew kernel exports and $2.5 billion in revenue in 2015.
Ta Quang Huyen director of Hoang Son Limited Company in Binh Phuoc Province said last year, his company received many orders from the European Union and Australia.
However, because of currency depreciation in those countries, this year importers in these markets have ordered less.
Vietnam, the world's largest cashew exporter, plans to ship 350,000 tonnes of the nuts this year, a rise of 14 percent from 2014, the Vietnam News newspaper reported, citing a projection by the Vietnam Cashew Association.
About 30 percent of Vietnam's cashews are exported to the United States, 25 percent to Europe and another 20 percent to China.
- Vietnam News
If you’ve ever been hungry for Chinese food and saw cashew chicken on the menu, you might have ordered it without thinking much about its history.
Unless you’re from Springfield, you probably didn’t know that cashew chicken was created here and has a rich history. If you’re from Springfield, you probably know that Leong’s Asian Diner is the “home of the original Springfield style cashew chicken,” according to its website.
The dish was invented by David Leong, who came to the United States from Guangdong, China, and became an American citizen at the age of 19. Leong fought in World War II and would often cook in the middle of combat. His friends told him that he needed to start his own restaurant, so he teamed up with a doctor in Springfield, who helped him open the Lotus Garden, which was the first Asian restaurant in town. After a fall out, Leong opened up Leong’s Tea House in 1963 off Sunshine Street across from KY3’s station. The restaurant, now called Leong’s Asian Diner, is now located off Republic Road.
Wing Yee Leong is the son of David Leong and the executive chef and owner of Leong’s. If you go into Leong’s today, you can see him cooking up his father’s original cashew chicken recipe.
“Back then, there was no boneless chicken,” Wing Yee said. “He boned the chicken and took the authentic Asian dish of stir fry chicken and battered and fried it to adapt to the Ozark lifestyle. He came up with Asian sauce, like an oyster sauce, and threw cashews and green onions on it. The guy loved it.”
Wing Yee said once word started spreading about the new dish, the restaurant was constantly busy with customers dying to try it.
Since the 1970s, several restaurants have adopted this recipe into their menus.
“It has caught on so much. Now, there is cashew chicken all over the nation. You’ll see signs outside restaurants that say, ‘We feature Springfield style cashew chicken,’” Wing Yee said.
I asked some Missouri State students where to get the best cashew chicken in Springfield.
Callee-Mae Bertram, a sophomore professional writing major, said she first tried Leong’s about a year ago. She ate cashew chicken in her hometown of Lebanon, Missouri, before coming to Springfield, but after trying Leong’s, she fell in love with the restaurant and claimed it as her favorite.
“The quality is really good. Plus you get enough for two meals so that’s nice,” Bertram said.
Trev Burnham, a senior business major from southeast Missouri, said he ate cashew chicken before coming to school in Springfield and thought it was offered everywhere.
“I thought it was a casual dish,” Burnham said. “I didn’t realize it had such a rich culture and story behind it.”
He first had it at Hong Kong Inn, and it’s been his favorite ever since.
“I’ve tried a few places since then, but I just prefer the Hong Kong Inn because it has good taste and is pretty cheap too.”
Spencer Trower, a senior logistics and supply chain management major, claimed Triple Eights has the best cashew chicken.
“You can get the cashew chicken, rice and a side for like five bucks,” Trower said. “I go there at least twice a week.”
I also talked to some area natives, who love and rave about their regional favorite. Some even bragged about how it was created here.
Derek Pon, a graduate student in business administration, has lived in Springfield his whole life.
“Most of us grew up on and are excited about the fact cashew chicken originated here — our bragging rights if you will,” Pon said.
He said his favorite place to get the local favorite used to be a place called Yen’s, but because it closed, he gives Peking House the people’s choice for the best cashew chicken.
“That’s where most everyone in the east side high schools would go,” Pon said. “Because once you get combo C, you’ll see.”
Emily Burwell, a senior elementary education major, has lived in Springfield her whole life as well. She also prefers to go to Peking House because the portion sizes are so big.
“The (cashew chicken) sauce is unlike any other and it is always fresh,” Burwell said. “It’s right next to my high school so we would always go there before games. It’s even where I always want to go for my birthday.”
Sam Boone, a senior exercise and movement science major, has lived in Springfield for almost 22 years. He said he realized cashew chicken was a Springfield specialty in kindergarten when they served it for lunch one day in the cafeteria.
“People around town started chirpin’ about his place called Lucy’s, and my family, after hearing how much I liked it at school, took me there one day and I fell in love,” Boone said.
He said he tried several other Chinese restaurants after his first trip to Lucy’s, but he didn’t seem to find anything better and has been a Lucy’s fan for years now.
“I would always come back to Lucy’s, like a cashew chicken boomerang of love.”
Lucy’s won 417 Magazine’s “Best of 417” award for best cashew chicken in 2006 and has won first runner up in 2004, 2005, 2007, 2008, 2009, 2011 and 2012.
Ashlyn Baker, a junior early childhood education major, prefers Bao Bao for her cashew chicken. Prior to discovering Bao Bao, she thought that the Chinese buffet in her hometown of Ava was the best Chinese she had ever tasted.
“It took me two years to find a place up here that I like as much or more than the place in Ava,” Baker said.
She said she tried six or seven places before she found Bao Bao, and they have the best cashew chicken in Springfield. Bao Bao has dine in or carry out; great prices and lunch portions are available all day.
The National Cashew Association of Nigeria (NCAN) has called for the promotion of cashew business in the country in order to unlock financing for the sector to thrive.
The National Publicity Secretary of NCAN and Chief Executive Officer (CEO), Universal Quest Nigeria, Mr. Sotonye Anga, said that Nigeria would generate a turnover of over N1trillion (about $6.25bn) in the next 10 years, noting however that necessary support and encouragement from regulators would make the target achievable.
Anga, who spoke on behalf of the group, noted that the cashew industry requires a financing to the tune of N50 billion (about $3312m) to boost production, processing and marketing.
He said there was a need for value addition in the nation’s cashew industry to create more jobs for unemployed young people, diversify the economy and earn foreign exchange.
Anga, who spoke at the export platform business luncheon tagged: “Multibillion Naira Cashew industry”, stressed that exporting raw cashew, also exports job opportunities, stressing the need for the nation to reverse this trend.
“Let us not forget that Africa is the centre of the cashew world, producing over 40 percent of 2.6 million tonnes of the world’s cashew nuts with Nigeria standing as one of the largest cashew producers in the continent alongside Ivory Coast, Guinea Bissau, Tanzania, Ghana, Kenya, Mozambique and recently Mali,” he said.
”The time to add value to our cashew and thereby create more jobs for our unemployed young people, reduce unemployment, diversify our economy, reduce the pressure on our naira, stimulate economic growth and get a bigger share of the cashew dollar is now,” he added.
According to him, $1.8 billion per annum in naira is an equivalent of N351 billion from just cashew alone, noting that it is as a matter of urgency for Nigeria to have a paradigm shift to look away from petrol dollar to cashew dollar.
VENTURES AFRICA – The National Cashew Association of Nigeria (NCAN) says the country will generate N1 trillion ($5 billion) from the cash crop in the next 10 years. However, the actualization of the projected revenue would be dependent on the kind of support and encouragement it gets from regulators.
Sotonye Anga, the National Publicity Secretary of NCAN, who doubles as the Chief Executive Officer (CEO), Universal Quest Nigeria, spoke at an export platform business luncheon themed Multibillion Naira Cashew industry. He said that the cashew industry is filled with a lot of opportunities.
“Let us not forget that Africa is the centre of the cashew world, producing over 40 percent of 2.6 million tonnes of the world’s cashew nuts with Nigeria standing as one of the largest cashew producers in the continent alongside Ivory Coast, Guinea-Bissau, Tanzania, Ghana, Kenya, Mozambique and recently Mali,” he told local media platform Thisday.
Anga said the time was right for the country to add value to its cashew and create more jobs, diversify the economy, strengthen the Naira, and also stimulate economic growth.
He noted that Nigeria’s annual production of raw cashew nuts currently stands at 144,000 tonnes. The crop has become a major foreign exchange earner for the country, with prices increasing by 266.7 percent in the last nine years.
The NCAN Secretary General therefore advised the government to consolidate its place in the world cashew market by increasing its cashew production and processing, as global demand for the crop rises.
“As we allocate more land for cashew cultivation, our major focus should be to increase our national average in terms of yield per hectare which is around 400kg to 600kg per hectare to at least 1,000 to 1500kg per hectare,” Thisday quoted Anga as saying.
He therefore urged the government to establish a national cashew seed programme, introduce disease-resistant seedlings, rejuvenate old cashew farms and build capacity of farmers.
The prospects shown by the cashew industry comes as a boost to Nigeria’s effort to diversify its economy. The largely oil-based economy has been hard hit by falling global oil prices, as revenues from the commodity accounts for about 95 percent of government spending. Having sectors and sub-sectors capable of providing alternative source of foreign exchange will therefore, help the long-term growth of the country.
- VENTURES AFRICA
Saturday, February 7, 2015
Vietnam targets 2.5 bln USD revenue from cashew exports
HO CHI MINH CITY, Feb. 6 (Xinhua) -- Vietnam targeted a total revenue of 2.5 billion U.S. dollars from cashew exports in 2015, higher than last year's 2 billion U.S. dollars, according to the Vietnam Cashew Association (Vinacas) on Friday.
In 2014, Vietnam shipped cashew nuts to 50 nations around the globe, with the U.S. market accounting for 30 percent of Vietnamese cashew exports, followed by the European Union (EU) with 25 percent and China with 20 percent.
In recent years, Vietnam's cashew output averaged 400,000 tons per annum while local businesses' processing capacity hit 1 million tons. The country faces tough competition from other nations, especially those from Africa.
Last year, cashews continued to be one of the country's key farm produce exports, after rice, rubber and coffee, according to the association.
Tuesday, February 3, 2015
Vietnam, the world's top cashew nut exporter, has imported a record 769,000 tonnes of the raw nuts in 2014 for processing for export, a surge of 59.3 percent from a year ago, the
Vietnam News reported, quoting the Vietnam Cashew Association.
Of the imported volume, 106,700 tonnes came from Nigeria, or nearly 90 percent of the African nation's annual output, the report said.
Vietnam's cashew nut exports in 2014 jumped 16.9 percent to 305,000 tonnes from the previous year, government data showed.
Monday, February 2, 2015
Ivory Coast will produce 600,000 tons of raw cashew nuts during the 2014-2015 campaign, which opens next February, according to an information given on the 30th January by the Council of cotton and cashew nuts at the end of a workshop on the operationalization of the standby committees to monitor the marketing of cashew.
The Ivorian authorities have indicated that they are expecting a production estimated at 600,000 tons.
According to the Council of cotton and cashew nuts, 540,000 tons will be for export while 60,000 tons will be processed locally.
On this occasion, the Director of the Council of cotton and cashew, Bassifo Ouattara said that these committees will be tasked to ensure compliance with the rules of the marketing of this product. He added that Côte d’Ivoire is the “first largest producer in Africas.”
To this end, he continued, “these committees that have been established by a ministerial decree, dated March 25, 2014, will raise awareness of the industry to respect regulations, communicate to the Council the various violations of this legislation and arbitrate conflicts between different actors.”
For Côte d’Ivoire, theclear objectiveisto maintain itsposition as the leadingAfrican producerof the nut.The country had reachedthis rankafter arecord2013-2014campaign with a production of 550,000tons ofcashew nuts.
Ivory Coast was a middling producer, growing around 80,000 tons of raw cashews per year. By last season, however, as demand for the nuts has grown, output had jumped to around a half million tonnes, making it the world’s top exporter and second to India in overall production.
In the north of the country, cotton and cashews are the only cash crops, so as some cashew growers have started to do well, others have piled in. Output has increased because new plantations planted in recent years are coming into production.
For the country, which represents 20% of world production, it now remains to meet the challenge of transforming the raw material by creating similar infrastructure that launched in Bouaké in October by the company Cashew Savannah which transform 20,000 tons per year
Tuesday, January 27, 2015
The National Cashew Association of Nigeria (NCAN) has said it expected a 20 per cent rise in cashew production in 2015.
Spokesman of the association, Mr Sotonye Anga, said this in an interview with the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) in Lagos.
He said the expectation was based on the Good Agricultural Practices (GAP) adopted by farmers.
Anga said the association has trained cashew farmers on GAP to ensure that they were well managed before and after harvest.
"From all indications, the Nigerian cashew season looks quite promising in 2015.
"At the moment, cashew farmers are adhering to sound post harvest crop management protocols.
"Overall, this will improve the cashew yield by 20 per cent in 2015 as we flag off the cashew season.
"Our farmers were trained on GAP to ensure that cashew farms are well managed before and after harvest," Anga said.
The spokesman said cashew trees across the federation had enjoyed favourable weather conditions. He said the association was determined to put Nigeria on top of the global cashew producing chart.
"Achieving the status of number one cashew producing country will not come by wishful thinking but by hard work. "This, we have come to know, and have worked hard in the days, weeks and months preceding this 2015 season.
"We will give buyers of Nigerian cashew value for their money," he said.
- All Africa