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Benin - Cashew Nuts Sector and Agricultural Entrepreneurship Development Support Project (PADEFA-ENA) - Appraisal Report


The cashew nut sector stands out as one of the highest value-added flagship sectors featuring in the Government's Action Programme (GAP, 2016-2021), given its: (i) high potential to contribute to employment and income generation; (ii) contribution to food and nutritional security; and (iii) great export potential. Cashew nut is the country's second-largest agricultural export product after cotton, and accounts for 3% of the gross national product (GNP) and 25% of the income from agricultural exports. The project area alone generates more than 87% of national production. However, it is among the areas with the highest poverty rates, with an incidence of poverty rising from 36.2% in 2011 to 40.1% in 2015, well above the national average of 30.2%. With the strategic orientations of both Benin and the Bank in mind, the project design places particular emphasis on: (i) food and nutritional security; (ii) development of the sector's value chain, including local processing of raw cashew nuts (RCN); (iii) employment of youth and women; (iv) climate change (CC), strengthening population resilience and improving endogenous production systems. The project’s sector objective is to contribute to poverty reduction and improve food and nutritional security; its specific objective is to support a sustainable increase in stakeholder income and sector productivity. The project's total cost is UA 14.59 million and will take 5 years to execute. The main expected outputs include: (i) re-profiling 145 km of access roads; (ii) building and equipping 5 RCN storage warehouses each with a capacity of one thousand tonnes; (iii) rehabilitating 15,000 ha of old cashew nut plantations and supporting the creation of a modern cashew orchard of 3,000 ha for an expected improved yield of 700 kg per hectare; (iv) supporting job creation, identified in the various links of the sector, for 10,000 youths and women; (v) supporting the construction and equipment of 20 satellite RCN shelling units for the benefit mainly of women and 20 walnut and cashew apple processing units; (vi) installing 5 mini-power plants of 10Kwc and 30 improved village water systems for communities and industrial processing units; and (vii) providing assistance to stakeholders in the sector to access bank credit through a facilitation fund hosted by the National Agricultural Development Fund (FNDA). In total, the project will directly reach more than 75,000 stakeholders in the sector, 30% of whom are women.

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