Press Release

USDA West Africa PRO-Cashew Project Hosts Launch Event

PRO-Cashew lays out implementation objectives to improve the cashew sector along the value chain in five West African countries (Benin, Burkina Faso, Côte d’Ivoire, Ghana and Nigeria)

ABIDJAN, Côte d’Ivoire The United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) West Africa Cashew Project (PRO-Cashew) implemented by Cultivating New Frontiers in Agriculture (CNFA), an international agricultural development organization based in Washington D.C., USA officially kickstarted  with a launch ceremony on Thursday, November 19th at the American Andrew Young Center in Abidjan. In collaboration with the U.S. Embassy in Côte d’Ivoire and with the support of Le Conseil du Coton et de l’Anacarde, the ceremony was attended by U.S. Ambassador to Côte d’Ivoire, Richard K. Bell, and the Ivorian Minister of Agriculture and Rural Development, Honorable  Kobenan Kouassi Adjoumani. Due to the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic, the event was attended in person by key project personnel in line with local health guidance along with an additional 100 online participants.

“The official launch ceremony marks the beginning of the formal and effective implementation of the various activities of PRO-Cashew. We have started our operations in three of the five project countries, and we plan to move forward efficiently to extend activities in the remaining two countries. Our goal is to leverage a comprehensive set of interventions to improve the cashew sector throughout the value chain,” said Jean François Guay, Chief of Party (COP), PRO-Cashew.

The interactive launch event was broadcast virtually allowing participants to interact, ask questions and get insights into the project, the modalities of its implementation among actors, stakeholders, the press and the public.

COP Jean François Guay started the event with welcome remarks followed by remarks from Ambassador Bell and Minister Adjoumani.  This was followed by an online presentation by Dan Archibald, Agricultural Attaché of USDA in Ghana, laying the framework of the Food for Progress Program and their work in West Africa.

The event continued with a detailed presentation of PRO-Cashew elaborating on the project’s components, range of activities and responsibilities in each country, partners, and coordination of activities through the conclusion of the project. This session included a robust Q&A session. Towards the end of the event, three success stories of online interventions between a local cashew cooperative and exporter EcoCajou, a U.S. cashew kernel buyer Terra Nova, and another U.S. buyer Caro Nut who are supporting PRO-Cashew with their sustainability plan,  were showcased.

For more information on PRO-Cashew, please email or visit


About CNFA: Cultivating New Frontiers in Agriculture (CNFA) is an international agricultural development organization that specializes in the design and implementation of sustainable, enterprise-based agricultural initiatives. We work with businesses, foundations, governments, and communities to build customized local and global partnerships that meet the world’s growing demand for food. Since our inception in 1985, we have designed and implemented enterprise-based, agricultural development initiatives to facilitate market access, enhance agribusiness competitiveness, increase productivity, and improve access to inputs and financing in 47 countries around the world.