United States (U.S.) Ambassador’s Visit celebrates Cashew as Cash Crop


She reaffirmed the United States’ support of the West African cashew processing industry and shared her satisfaction regarding the encouraging results


Her Excellency Jessica Davis Ba, the United States of America’s Ambassador to Côte d’Ivoire, reaffirmed America’s commitment to supporting the growing West African cashew processing industry during an official visit organized by TechnoServe’s Prosper Cashew project.

Spanning across Côte d’Ivoire, Ghana, and Nigeria, Prosper Cashew has ambitious goals. It is on track to increasing cashew processing capacity in West Africa to 15% of its total production volume. It expects to create more than 4,500 new jobs–at least 50% for women–facilitate $61 million of investment in the cashew sector, and support processors to sell more than $200 million of cashew products into domestic, regional and international markets.

Krishanu Chakravarty, Chief of Party, TechnoServe Prosper Cashew, accompanied Ambassador Davis Ba on the tour. He also provided an overview of the five-year project funded by the United States Department of Agriculture’s Food for Progress.

“It was an honor to host Ambassador Jessica Davis Ba and demonstrate how Prosper Cashew is working to transform the cashew industry sustainably through a localized, regenerative approach,” Chakravarty said. “We are proud to have the trust and support of the U.S. government on this project, which is well on its way to creating a better future for the people and communities. We look forward to the guidance and support of USDA’s Food for progress program as we move from here and build a legacy of transformative change in the West African cashew industry.”

Chakravarty shared the project’s biggest successes and challenges in a strategy session with the ambassador. She reaffirmed the United States’ support of the West African cashew processing industry and shared her satisfaction regarding the encouraging results.

West Africa is responsible for 45% of all raw cashew nut production today. Less than 7% of it gets processed where it is harvested. Prosper Cashew is changing that by working with processors like Dorado Ivory. The project builds partnerships, bringing together processors and other supply-chain actors, investors, and the public sector to keep the economic and social value of the cashew at its source in West Africa.

“Our team appreciated Ambassador Davis Ba’s interest in West Africa’s bid to become a leading supply source for premium, single-origin cashews for the U.S. market and beyond,” said Dorado Ivory’s Chairman Venkatesan Rajkumar. “We thank Prosper Cashew for promoting Ivorian cashew quality and standards, and supporting our marketing efforts.”

Dorado Ivory sent off its 1,000th cashew shipment to the U.S. market during Ambassador Davis Ba’s visit. Prosper Cashew plans to run a U.S. consumer campaign to promote cashews from West Africa.

Ambassador Davis Ba’s meeting with Sarata Toure, the general manager and co-owner of SITA, a cashew processing unit, left a lasting impression. : “On behalf of the American people it is really an honor to see how our investments in the cashew industry empower beneficiaries in creating new jobs that improve the quality of life for those in the communities. I was thrilled to discuss Prosper Cashew’s impact on the communities and their livelihood, along with matters related to environmental sustainability in the local cashew industry. Having the chance to meet SITA, one of the beneficiaries and to discover the company’s unique journey was also an incredible experience and helped me reframe the way I think about how we are working in the sector.” Her Excellency, Jessica Davis Ba, U.S Ambassador to Côte d’Ivoire.

TechnoServe’s project is set to continue through 2025 with a focus on strengthening and reviving existing cashew processing facilities, improving access to funds, demonstrating the business case for additional investment flows into the sector, and bringing together investors and high quality investees.


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