Have you ever asked the question: Why is cashew fruit not sold in some markets and stores? Well, there are lovers of cashew fruit who believe this fruit is not easy to find in the fruit market.
There should be reasons associated with the scarcity of the cashew fruit in the fruit market. We will help you find out as you read through this article.
The cashew tree (Anacardium occidentale), which is found in lush tropical environments, is a fascinating conundrum. Respected for its delicious nuts, the cashew tree also produces the cashew apple. This is a fruit that is sometimes disregarded and appears to be forgotten.
Even with its distinct tastes and possible health advantages, cashew fruit is still glaringly missing on supermarket and market shelves.
As promised, this article will unravel and examine the reasons behind cashew fruit lesser popularity compared to its nut counterpart.
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Components of the Cashew Tree
The cashew nut and the cashew apple are the two different components of the cashew tree’s harvest. The nut, which is hidden beneath the fruit in a hard shell, is well-known around the world for its flavorful and creamy texture.
On the other hand, a plump, pear-shaped structure called the cashew apple hangs above the nut. The fruit is high in antioxidants, fiber, and vitamin C, and it has a juicy, sweet-sour flavor profile.
What prevents this ostensibly delicious and healthful fruit from becoming widely available? Let’s quickly find out.
Why is Cashew Fruit not Sold?
Below are the reasons cashew fruit is rare in the market:
1. Shelf Life and Perishability
The cashew fruit’s short shelf life and extreme perishability are among the main causes of its disappearance from grocery store shelves.
Cashew apples are susceptible to quick degradation after harvest. And this contrasts with the resilient and durable cashew nuts.
Due to its delicate nature, the fruit is difficult to transport and store, which deters large-scale commercial cultivation.
2. Processing Difficulties
Why is cashew fruit not sold in some markets and stores? Listen up. When cashew apples are removed from the tree, they begin to ferment within hours, making them extremely perishable.
The cashew fruit deteriorates quickly, making transportation to processing plants difficult. In addition, there are technological difficulties in pressing the fruit’s juice or keeping it unprocessed.
Conventional processing techniques, including fermenting cashew wine or using the fruit in regional specialties, are constrained by consumer demand, and are not well known.
3. Cultural Preferences and Lack of Experience
The cashew apple is a cultural icon in many areas that produce cashews and is frequently used in regional cuisine. But its promise as a worldwide commodity is still mostly unrealized.
Widespread adoption is discouraged by the fruit’s short shelf life and lack of familiarity with customers.
Outside of its native regions, attempts to popularize the cashew apple are met with skepticism and a lack of consumer understanding.
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4. Financial Inclination
Why is cashew fruit not sold in some markets and stores? As a result of its greater market demand and longer shelf life, cashew nuts continue to be the preferred cash crop for many farmers from an economic perspective.
It is frequently believed that the more straightforward and profitable cashew nut commerce is more profitable than the more complex process of collecting, shipping, and processing cashew apples.
Why Cashews are not Sold in their Shells?
Apart from the question “why is cashew fruit not sold?” which has been answered above, there is the question of “why cashews are not sold in their shells?” and we will address this now.
The reasons cashews are not sold in their shells is because they contain hazardous substance.
Poison ‘sumac’ and poison ‘ivy’ are related to cashews. People who are susceptible to chemicals like poison ivy may experience an itching skin reaction due to urushiol, a potent oily chemical irritant found in cashew plants.
The irritants are present between the cashew seed and its shell in addition to on the plant’s leaves. Skin reactions can occur while handling the shell or consuming a nut that has been oiled by the shell.
To eliminate the hazardous shell oil, the seeds are roasted to a high temperature. Consuming uncooked, raw cashew seeds exposes you to this hazardous substance, which may be lethal.
Cashews that are considered “raw” are often cooked by steaming or boiling them in oil. They turn from a greenish-gray color to a light brown color when they are roasted.
Also, cashew nuts are not sold in their shells because they contain a dangerous toxin called urushiol in the seeds. And the shells themselves have a lining that is packed with this substance, which could cause skin sensitivities in customers.
Take Home for You
The story of the cashew fruit’s exclusion from popular marketplaces includes issues with processing, perishability, cultural preferences, and cost.
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Overshadowed by the nut equivalent in popularity, the cashew apple is nevertheless hidden in plain sight while having distinct flavors and nutritional benefits.
Perhaps the cashew fruit will come into its own as consumer tastes and technology develop, providing a double treat for those looking for nutrition and flavor in this tropical gem.