I love Cashew nuts, I can eat at least a handful of them a day, their creamy texture is so moreish. Up until now I have never once thought how cashew nuts are harvested or processed, so when I came across an article detailing the step by step process of cashew nut production I was shocked! I was amazed at the long labour intensive techniques involved in bringing cashew nuts to our table. This made me realise the reason behind the high price tag of the cashew nuts I love.
Below are some pictures which will hopefully give you an insight into the amount of work that goes into harvesting and getting these nuts ready.
The cashew apple and seed. The seed is removed from
the apple. The apple can be juiced or used in preserves.
The cashew seeds have to be steamed and then dried for
24 hours to make it easier to remove the outer shell.
Cashew seeds are cracked individually by hand. The cashews have a
toxic substance under the shell similar to poison ivy,
therefore workers oil their hands to protect them.
The outer shell has been cracked open and the kernel is being removed
Cashews are then dried to reduce the moisture content making it easier for peeling.
Lastly the kernel is carefully peeled one by one to reveal…..
…the final product! The cashew nuts that we all know and love.