As the global demand for macadamia outweighs the available supply, there is a business opportunity that Rwandans are ready to tap into. As Rwanda looks to diversifying its agricultural exports to reduce the high reliance on traditional exports, experts claim macadamia nuts are among the products that can help the country achieve that objective.
According to “Macadamia Nut Market Size, Share & Trends Analysis Report” by Grand View Research Inc, published in June 2020, the global macadamia nut market size was valued at $1.17 billion in 2019 and is expected to more than double to $2.36 billion by 2027.
Speaking to The New Times, Norce Elysee Gatarayiha, the Managing Director of Norelga Macadamia Rwanda Ltd, said that currently, macadamia supply caters for only 48 percent of the global demand, living a supply gap of 52 percent. This situation, he said, makes it a much sought-after agricultural product globally, especially in the European, US and Asian market.
Norelga Macadamia Rwanda Ltd is one of the firms that pioneered macadamia farming and processing in Rwanda. Gatarayiha said that nuts in a shell (dried nuts but not processed) cost between $3 and 4 (about Rwf3,000 - 4,000) per kg, while kernel macadamia nuts cost between $21 and 23 (about Rwf21,000 - 23,000) per kg.
Underscoring the opportunity from this crop, he said that there are clients who want him to supply them with macadamia to the tune of 36 containers – or 900 tons – which is far more than the four containers – 100 tons of macadamia – he has been producing per year.