The country looks forward to reap huge fortune from the agriculture sector as the Federal Government recently rolled out Cashew Expansion Programme in Ife, Osun State.
According to the President, National Cashew Association of Nigeria, NCAN, Tola Faseru, who stated that the country realised $253 million from cashew in 2015 and assured that the nation was hoping to increase its production capacity from 160,000 tons to 500,000 tons by 2020.
Currently, Nigeria is the 6th largest cashew producer in the world after Ivory Coast, India, Vietnam, Tanzania and Guinea Bissau.
Faseru commended various interventions programmes of Federal Government to encourage production and exportation of the raw material especially with the implementation of the first phase of the four-year cashew development road map and the N550 billion export stimulating funds.
He added that there was huge market for the product which made one of 13 Non-oil Strategic Export Products (NSEPs) to be used in diversifying the nation’s economy away from oil under the Nigerian Industrial Revolution Plan.
Cashew products include raw nuts, cashew kernels, cashew apple and cashew nut shell liquid, which are all traded in the international market.