Tolaro Global

Partnership period: May 2016 – May 2018

Countries: Benin

ACHIEVEMENTS: Tolaro Global received fair trade certification for its cashews in early 2017, allowing it to charge a price premium — a portion of which is passed through to the farmers — when selling in US and European markets. Tolaro purchased cashews at a premium price from more than 3,230 smallholder farmers..

PURPOSE: Help Benin’s processors and smallholder growers gain significant value-added income from in country processing of cashews for retail sale. More than 40 percent of the world’s raw cashews are grown in West Africa, but more than 90 percent is exported for roasting, seasoning, and packaging.

APPROACH: During the program partnership, Tolaro Global established an organic and fair trade-certified cashew roasting, seasoning, and packaging plant to sell retail-quality cashews to overseas markets. Tolaro identified 3,230 smallholder cashew farmers to supply raw cashews to the business and provided agronomic training to the farmers, helping them to become organic-certified, pay fair trade-certified prices for raw nuts, and provide them with equity ownership in Tolaro through stock.