The Australian Macadamia Society recently revealed that the price consumers were paying for macadamia nuts had doubled from USD 25 to USD 50 per kilogram in the last decade.
The increase in price for macadamia nuts is not restricted to any particular country. In Rwanda, farm gate prices for raw macadamia nuts augmented from Rwf800 to Rwf02,000 per kilogram in just a year. This has also increased the prospects of higher incomes for farmers.
According to The New Times, since more farmers in Rwanda are coming into the cultivation of macadamia nuts, there has been a growing high demand for the seeds resulting in the increase in its price. The price for one seedling has been rising gradually, from Rwf600 in 2006 to Rwf1,500 in 2016 before climbing to Rwf5,000 currently.
Currently, several Rwandan farmers are discouraged from growing the crop because of the steep rise in prices, which increases their cost of production. "The nuts are scarce on the market," said Norce Elysée Gatarayiha, the head of Norelga Macadamia, one of the enterprises that pioneered macadamia farming and processing in Rwanda.
This year, over 90,000 seedlings were prepared and distributed, Gérardine Mukeshimana, Agriculture and Animal Resources Minister said to The New Times. She recently said that the government of Rwanda would encourage farmers to increase planting of the crop because it has high demand on the international market. "We believe that the cost will be lowered by having more seedlings available and a number of seedling producers (including the youth) are taking advantage of this opportunity," she added.