Cashew fruit in Ratanakiri, Cambodia. The fruit tastes pretty astringent. I remember liking it and eating it often as a kid, but now that my tast buds have developed, I’m not a big fan. The actual cashew is that seed that’s hanging down below the fruit.
In a way, cashews have transformed the lives of the indigenous highland minorities. It’s caused their economic development to skyrocket. Most minority families will plant a cashew orchard to supplement their regular subsistence rice planting.
For the first time, the indigenous minorities have a cash crop to sell; suddenly they have money, to buy motorcycles, chain saws, tin roofs, and build larger houses. Suddenly they can become wealthy.
It’s the tail end of cashew season right now. All over the province you can see villagers with big bags of cashews on their motorcycles, taking them to the market to sell. Trucks laden with tons of them rumble dustily through the town on their way to Vietnam.
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