SMP 2120 Preparing for a circular all-African cashew processing industry for Tanzania

  Cashew apple and cashew shell are by-products of the cashew nut the processing industry. The apple is rich in vitamins, polyphenols, sugars, minerals, amino acids and dietary fibre and can be considered as a functional food. Despite being highly nutritious, utilization of cashew apple has been limited due to certain disadvantages, such as high perishability and its astringent taste. The local African variety in this project is especially known for this (compared to the South-American one). Currently applications are therefore not in food, and alternatives, e.g. feed (see and energy use after pressing need to be considered

Cashew shells are the main product from cashew processing, while at an earlier stage also cashew fruits are being produced. Both by-products need proper valorisation to improve circularity and local profitability of the cashew chain. Cashew shells remain after the kernel is extracted. Different options exist for processing the shells generally focusing on extraction of Cashew Nut Shell Liquid (CNSL) and press cake or de-oiled shells. Practical implementation of higher added value applications is limited. Energy applications are currently an attractive option especially in view of charcoal use, leading to deforestation. Conversion of the residue to pellets would make it into a tradable commodity.