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Manufacture of Edible Nuts
South Africa is the world’s largest producer and exporter of macadamia nuts and it produces pecan, and on a smaller scale, walnut, almond, cashews, hazelnut, pistachios, and peanuts. Locally-produced nuts are mainly exported. Global demand for nuts has been growing as an increasing number of consumers opt for healthier lifestyles. High-income countries have the largest consumption, with almonds being the most popular. In South Africa, peanuts are the most consumed as they are more affordable than other nuts. South Africa consumes about 81,496 tons of peanuts annually as edible nuts and as processed peanut butter.
South Africa’ tree nut industry has followed the global trend of higher production, trade and consumption over the past decade. Production, and the number of new orchards, are both growing at more than 10% per annum, mainly due to industry’s response to increasing demand from export markets. The returns per hectare of tree nuts is also high relative to other crops such as sugar cane, wine grapes and bananas. South Africa has the largest consumption of peanut butter outside of the US. In 2019 peanuts were the largest nuts category in South Africa as they are more affordable than other types of nuts. But it is more expensive to produce peanut butter locally than it is to import pre-packed peanut butter. The impact of peanut butter imports is exacerbated by the collapse in local peanut production.
This report focuses on the manufacture of nut food, including wholesaling and processing. It includes comprehensive information on the state and size of the sector and of various varieties, including trade and other statistics and influencing factors. There are profiles of 30 companies including Tiger Brands, Simba and Thokoman, which make peanuts and peanut butter, macadamia producers such as Global Macadamia and almond products producers such as Cape Almonds and Nature’s Choice.