The demand for cashew nuts by traders in some markets in the Federal Capital Territory (FCT) has drastically increased during market days in the recent time.
A survey conducted by the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) on Wednesday in the FCT, revealed that cashew was fast selling more than any other farm produce in the markets.
Recently on market days, once traders noticed a truck approaching with loaded sacks of cashew nuts, they quickly rushed and started negotiations before the vehicle stopped.
Usman Musa, a trader of cashew nuts at Abaji Market told NAN that the business was profitable as the nuts were being exported.
“A measure of cashew nuts which was formerly sold between N300 and N400, is now being sold for between N800 and N900 because of the high demand.
“We were told that some countries are using the nuts to produce chemicals while others are using it for clinical substances.
“Cashew nuts business is more profitable these days than some other farm produce because of its high demand for export,’’ Musa said.
Collins Obi, a business man in Kwali Market described the recent demand for cashew nuts as a breakthrough for business to thrive.
He said the nuts often known as “the poor man’s plantation is now sold at high prices and it is used to make mouth-watering and rich curries’’.
“Both cashew nuts and the fruit have multiple uses in the society and can also be roasted and eaten dry.
“The nuts are rich in copper, zinc, magnesium, iron and phosphorous which are good in preventing heart diseases.’’
In Kuje Market, the situation was not different as farmers from neighbouring villages brought sacks loaded with cashew nuts to large scale buyers of the produce.
The National Centre for Biotechnology Information (NCBI) says cashew nuts have a lot of health benefits.
Studies consistently show that the nut intake has a cholesterol-lowering effect, prevents oxidative stress, inflammation, vascular reactivity and heart diseases