Macadamia nuts have clearly established themselves in the food retail trade (LEH) in recent years. Due to the efforts of the discounters, the nutrient-rich nut variety is becoming more and more the focus of the German consumers, and so their consumption is gradually increasing. That was the reason for the overwhelming enthusiasm of visitors for the booth of the Limbua Group -supplier of organic macadamias from Kenya- at the last BioFach in Nuremberg. Despite the further growth potential, the management of the German branch of this business is still facing some major challenges in the advancement of its product. Whole macadamia kernels can be found both on the shelves of organic shops and in the conventional area
Because of their size and unique taste, the macadamia is often called the 'queen of nuts'. For several years, the demand for the flavor-intensive nut variety has been on the rise. Limbua Deutschland GmbH has registered a strong increase in demand for premium organic macadamia nuts since the autumn of last year. As a result, there will be a slight increase in the price of new lots, soon to be put on the market. Although the German discounter has long been offering conventional macadamias in its assortment, a large number of consumers are looking for premium goods. “Correspondingly, organic macadamias as well as conventional macadamias (mainly roasted & salted) are also increasingly represented in the organic retail trade and in German food retailing,” said Sales Manager Klaus-Werner Horlitz.
The nuts are grown and harvested by Kenyan farmers High price segment
Despite the steady market development for organic macadamias, their market share is still limited due to the smaller supply of organic goods compared to conventional goods. In addition to this, the current demand is not so great that the nuts can compete with common varieties such as walnuts and peanuts, even in the organic sector. According to Horlitz, this has to do partly with the consumer's ignorance. Horlitz: "There are still many consumers who do not know of this nut or of other macadamia products. And macadamias will never really compete properly with other nuts as they are in an upscale price range.''
Because of this, it is all the more important to emphasize the multiple possibilities for using and presenting the nuts. Because macadamia oil is not only an important ingredient in the cosmetics industry, but also in the food industry, for instance in sandwich spreads or in chocolate or caramelized form. On German fairs one will also find sugar-coated macademia nuts more often now. In the sports’ world Horlitz sees many opportunities for a further rise of the product as well. Marathon runners use macadamia as a quick, easy source of energy, for example. "This will allow the market for this premium nut to continue to grow worldwide."
The raw material in its shell: an totally natural productFrom a pioneer to the leading organic producer
After its founding in 2006 and its initial phase as a pioneer in the cultivation and marketing of organic macadamia nuts, the German-Kenyan company is now one of the world's leading producers. Due to the high level of technology used, the direct support and promotion of smallholder farmers, and last but not least the effective processing of macadamia nuts and other products on the farmers' organic mixed farms, the group is able to serve demanding customers around the world with raw materials, Macadamia oil and seedlings. At the foot of Mount Kenya in central Kenya, Limbua operates three modern decentralized production facilities and a nursery, all close to the smallholders. In addition, the group of companies enables various educational and development projects for the local population through its own foundation.