Published On: Wed, Apr 15th, 2015

A New Chance For Colombia – Cacay Export


Cacay Fruit & Seeds

When you say Colombia most people think of the country surrounded by drug wars, corruption and criminals. That kind of thinking is certainly not far from the truth looking at the countries colorful history with large areas covered by violence between government authorities and drug cartels. Now however the situation is starting to change and the Amazon forest may become the biggest source for the health and beauty industry.

A few years ago experts in the field of beauty and aging discovered that cacay nut with its protein-rich oil is one of the most efficient ways to slow down the aging process and increase the skin’s quality. By that time local people used it from time to time to treat their wounds, but mostly to feed their livestock and they also used cacay for firewood.

Refined oil can be used in different products and some of them can reach the price of over 200 dollars per ounce in beauty shops in Los Angeles and London.

Cacay trees used to be deep in the jungle on hard to reach areas, but nowadays plantations are popping up all over Columbia. There’s a lot of farmers who decided to sell their cows or other livestock and to invest the money into cacay production.

Every cacay nut contains three seeds a bit bigger the an almond and 60 kilograms of seeds cost almost 200 dollars which is equal to the minimum monthly pay for almost half of the nation.

One man focusing on cacay expansion is Alberto Jaramillo, the president of Kahai SAS in Bogota. While scientists were still researching about the nut’s usage he was looking for a market for the oil. He attended trade shows looking for partners and also led the case study process to ensure proof for the oil’s skincare application. His plan now is to double sales this year and to find more foragers and growers to increase his production.

One cacay tree can produce around 400 kilos of nuts and it’s native for certain parts of Colombia, Peru, Venezuela and Ecuador. Since not many people previously used it as a treatment, trees have reached over 40 meters high in some locations however loggers have also taken advantage of this opportunity and decreased the number of sizeable trees in recent years.

Cacay farming brings new hope for farmers all over Colombia and the country itself whilst also improving it’s public image. You never know, Colombia might become the world’s most well known health and beauty source.

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