Tolaro Global is developing one of the first cashew processing plants in Benin to roast and package smallholder farmer-grown cashews for sale in United States and European grocery stores.
More than 40 percent of the world's cashew nuts are grown in West Africa but more than 90 percent of the crop is exported without any value addition such as shelling, roasting, seasoning, and packaging. Benin's exporters and smallholder growers are missing out on significant value added income that would result from in-country processing. Tolaro is establishing an organic and Fair Trade certified cashew roasting, seasoning, and packaging plant to sell retail quality cashews to international markets.
In addition, in creating an equity ownership model, Tolaro is setting itself apart from other cashew buyers in Benin and offering a unique opportunity to smallholder farmers. By making smallholders into stakeholders, Tolaro is not only providing additional benefit to farmers, it is also creating loyalty to Tolaro among these farmers. The intent is that with the incentive of being a stakeholder, Tolaro's farmers will maintain motivation to produce and sell high-quality cashew nuts to Tolaro. Furthermore, the stakeholder model is designed to ensure an equitable partnership with a smallholder farmer base and if successful, could serve as an example for other companies engaging smallholder farmers.
In this webinar, Bob Leon, Tolaro's project manager, discusses Tolaro's model and why it's good both for farmers in Benin and consumers in the US, and will answer questions from online participants.
Learn more about Tolaro here!