India’s Kerala Agricultural University has developed technology to manufacture syrup from cashew apples, a usually unused by-product of the cashew nut. Productions costs are said to be around R20 (US$0.43) per 700 ml bottle. The moves comes as cashew nut processing companies in southern Sri Lanka have been urged to provide local cultivators with fermentation technology to make cider from cashew apples. The Sri Lanka Cashew Corporation is also to double its average cultivation area and production by 2004, in a bid to make Sri Lanka a leading producer of cashew products. Total cultivation increased from 20,000 to 30,000 hectares from l996 to 2000, with the Corporation now planning to boost this to 60,000.

By Swineetha Dias Wickramanayak in Colombo