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Cracking the Nut

Goal of the project

An inclusive and competitive cashew sector in Benin and Burkina Faso, in which smallholder farmers, processors and service providers are enabled to increase productivity and efficiency in a collaborative way generating increased revenues/profits for at least 10,000 farmers and generating increased disposable income for 2,500 workers in the cashew-processing industry

Project number



  • Benin
  • Burkina Faso


  • Benin: Donga, Borgou, Collines
  • Burkina Faso: Cascades, Sud-Ouest


  • Agriculture
  • Financial Sector
  • Cashew sector
  • Food processing

Project budget

€ 5,817,353 (FDOV contribution = € 2,900,000)


  • Trade Development International BV
  • FairMatch Support
  • Incluvest BV
  • MoFA NL

Project description

‘Cracking the nut’ aims at realizing an inclusive and competitive cashew sector in Benin and Burkina Faso. West Africa produces large quantities of raw cashew nuts. A low yield, lack of processing industry and insufficient collaboration between stakeholders makes that the added value is low and profits are made mostly overseas.
The objective of the project is to increase revenues for 10,000 farmers and income for 2,500 workers in the processing factories of the 2 countries where TDI, one of the partners, already has processing factories. The project will

  • support smallholder farmers/cooperations with inputs and training
  • strengthen the TDI processing factories through mechanisation
  • set up 4 decentralised de-shelling units of raw cashew nuts
  • establish 10 cashew apple juice factories and 2 Cashew Nutshell Liquid (CNSL) factories.

On sector and government level actions are taken to professionalise the sector. The business case is 3-fold: processing nuts with machinery to white cashew kernels, processing the shells into CNSL commodity used in the industry worldwide and expand micro finance loans to farmers for maintenance and renewal of their plantations.


The Ministry of Foreign Affairs is formal partner in this project.

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