Why Nuts and Dry fruits are expensive?

Yes! Nuts and dry fruits are expensive. The reasons being as follows:

  • Most of the nuts like Almonds, Pista, Walnuts (though grown to some extent in Kashmir), Hazelnuts, Brazil nuts are imported. They attract  import duties and logistics charges.
  • Though nuts like cashews are grown and are abundantly available in India, the demand outpaces the supply. For comparison, India happens to be the largest exporter of cashews once now is one of the largest importers of the nut.
  • Trade barriers with countries like Afghanistan. As there is no direct land  route for India to trade with Afghanistan, the goods like raisins and figs traverse around the sea to reach India or to some extent illegally enters India through Pakistan.
  • Higher GST: Most of the nuts and dry fruits are taxed at 12%.
  • Perishing nature of nut kernels and dry fruits. As these are not fast moving commodities, the traders incur losses as 20% of the produce in case of Figs/Anjeer gets wasted. The traders usually accounts this in the pricing.

Nuts too are perishable!

Like any other fruits or seeds nuts too are perishable. They do contain some  moisture even after long periods and various ways of drying. But the major factor being the oil content inside them. The oil turns rancid on exposure to air  and temperature. The more oil content in the nuts, the greater tendency it get perished faster.  So, for longer shelf life, It is strictly advised to store them in air free and air tight containers and at temperature of around 10  Degree celcius. 

The following are the tentative time lines by which the Nuts and  Dry fruits may perish under Indian climate.

Hazel Nuts, Walnuts, wet dates – Highly perishable i.e after 4-5 days at room temperature.

Anjeer /Dried Figs – Perishable after 10- 15 days days s at room temperature.

Cashews, Unsalted pista Kernels – Perishable after 20 – 25 days at room temperature.

Almond Kernels, Dried dates, Salted pista  with shell, Dried raisins – Perishable after a month at room temperature.