Mozambique to boost the economy

The country's cashew nut industry, one of the world's biggest, was dealt a body blow first by the 1977-1992 civil war and then by a controversial World Bank assistance package.

Mozambique to boost the economy

World Bulletin / News Desk

Mozambique is going nuts about cashews, and they're boosting the economy's health.

Now, the government is looking to help the curved, nutrient-packed nut to recover its past glory.

In Nampula, in the country's north, the end of cashew nut season sees a processing factory burst into activity.

Dozens of workers labour under a scorching hot roof, baked by the sweltering heat as they separate nut from shell with a stamp of the foot.

Condor Nuts, where they work, is one business that has seized on the support offered by the government having opened a plant in a suburb of Nampula in the heart of cashew country 10 years ago.

Condor boss Americo Matos told AFP that he was just getting started.

"At the moment, we process 8,000 tonnes of nuts every year," he said.

"Our goal is to quickly grow that to 10,000 tonnes a year and then, with our second factory, the company targets an overall capacity of 20,000 tonnes per year."

In Condor's warehouses, sacks brimming with nuts are piled several feet high. Hundreds of workers -- as many as 1,000 at peak times -- are on hand to cut, open and peel the harvest, often by hand.

For working five or six hour days in noisy conditions, the workers are paid 45 euros ($55) a month, barely more than the minimum wage.

"Demand is very strong. We manage to sell everything we produce, the future is bright," Matos said.

Last Mod: 29 Nisan 2018, 15:57
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