In Senegal, cashew brands upgrade their packaging

22 December 2023
ITC News

ITC is supporting small cashew processors and brands in Senegal to reach new markets and grow their operations. They organized a training on packaging for 30 cashew processing businesses in Senegal.

West Africa exports more cashews than any other region in the world. Senegal is part of that boom, along with Cote d’Ivoire, Ghana, Burkina Faso and Nigeria.

Established and new brands in Senegal want to turn raw cashews into higher-value products, creating innovative products for export and the local market. Cashew jams, juices, bars, and flour are just some of the products appearing on the shelves.

Looking at this context, ITC’s Alliances for Action sustainable agribusiness initiative organized a training course on product packaging for 30 participants from 11 small businesses working with cashews. In Senegal, under the Netherlands Trust Fund V programme, ITC is working with cashew businesses to grow their operations sustainably, improve their competitiveness and reach new markets. Improved packaging will be one step in the right direction.

The training was facilitated by Frederic Couty, a packaging and continuous improvement consultant at ITC. He guided the businesses on how best to develop packaging with efficient systems that improve profits and sustainability.

A step-by-step methodology goes through the process of choosing packaging materials, graphic design, labelling, equipment, packaging for transportation, and more. 

In line with consumer trends that favor environmentally friendly businesses, a special focus was placed on sustainable packaging. This will allow the brands to tap into European Union and other international markets as well as better accessing their existing local and regional markets.

He also delivered tailored coaching to eight companies from the NTFV cohort with factories in and around Dakar and in Casamance, Senegal’s biggest cashew-producing region.

Cashew apple juice company Casadeliz, who participated in the Speciality & Fine Food Fair in London, is working on a new packaging and marketing strategy that is more adapted to the UK market with the use of cans and tetra packs.

‘To promote the “made in Senegal” model, we need quality packaging because at the international level, the competition is not only on product quality but also on packaging,’ said Fatou Mbod, manager of the Casamance Verte GIE.

Mireille Dovonou, sales and marketing assistant at Lysa & Co, was most interested in the tailored approach of packaging. ‘We understood that packaging must be aligned with the company's vision and mission. Packaging must also be adapted to the customer's needs, which can be identified through surveys and test trials before validating and commissioning the final packaging.’

Moving on, ITC-Alliances for Action will be supporting the businesses as they implement the new methodology. The ITC teams will replicate this strategy for cocoa in Ghana and coffee in Ethiopia.


About the project

The Netherlands Trust Fund V (NTF) (July 2021 – June 2025) is based on a partnership between the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of The Netherlands and the International Trade Centre. The programme supports MSMEs in the digital technologies and agribusiness sectors. Its ambition is two-fold: to contribute to an inclusive and sustainable transformation of food systems, partially through digital solutions, and drive the internationalization of tech start-ups and export of IT&BPO companies in selected Sub-Saharan African countries.