EDFI AgriFI, managed by EDFI Management company and funded by the European Union, invests €3 million in Cajou Espoir, Togo’s largest processor of raw cashew nuts. This investment is part of the ACP regional window, supported by the Secretariat of the Organisation of African, Caribbean and Pacific states (OACPS), and marks EDFI AgriFI’s commitment to fostering sustainable agriculture and economic development in the region.
Enhance competitiveness of Togo’s cashew sector
With the support of AgriFI’s financing, Cajou Espoir aims to expand its sourcing and processing capacity. The investment will enable the company to increase its sourcing from associated farmer cooperatives and implement automation technologies at its plant, thereby enhancing production efficiency and quality without a loss of employment. Furthermore, the Togolese-owned company plans to acquire additional land to develop its own plantations, providing a strategic hedge against price volatility and potential sourcing disruptions. Investments will also be made in state-of-the-art machinery to produce cashew by-products and establish renewable energy generation capabilities.
EDFI AgriFI’s funding will enable the company to achieve its growth targets and further strengthen its position as a vertically integrated cashew value chain player. The investment will not only have a positive impact on the company’s operations but also benefit smallholder farmers in Togo. Moreover, this partnership will ensure that Cajou Espoir aligns with international environmental, social, and governance (ESG) standards, promoting sustainability and responsible business practices.
Francois Locoh-Donou, Founder and majority shareholder of Cajou Espoir SA, expressed his enthusiasm for the collaboration, stating, “We are thrilled to become EDFI MC’s first-ever investee in Togo under its AgriFI initiative. This long-term financing package will boost our economic and social impact in Togo. It will enhance job sustainability for hundreds of workers at our factories and substantially increase the revenues of more than 2,000 smallholder farmers. Also, it is yet another confirmation that Cajou Espoir meets high international ESG standards.”
The European Union Ambassador to Togo, Joaquín Tasso Vilallonga, commented, “We commend EDFI AgriFI’s commitment to sustainable development and their investment in Cajou Espoir. This support corroborates the commitment of the European Union with the Togolese government’s agricultural development vision, where the involvement of the private sector is an essential element; this is also in alignment with Team Europe’s efforts to promote investments in young businesses in Togo, pilot country of IYBA (Invest in Young Businesses in Africa) initiative.”
Yvonne Chileshe, Expert on Value Chains at OACPS Secretariat emphasized the significance of this investment for the region, stating, “Cajou Espoir’s dedication to organic production and its efforts to uplift local communities align perfectly with the priorities of the OACPS on inclusive finance and value addition which include sustainable cashew processing in Togo. We are delighted to see EDFI AgriFI’s support enabling the expansion of sustainable cashew processing in Togo.”