Get $15 off an order over $150.

Cashew nuts in small pieces: economical and ecological

Published on Jul 3, 2023 (Updated on May 20, 2024)
Noix de cajou en petits morceaux: économique et écologique

How Cashew Nut Grading Works

The quality of cashew nuts is traditionally associated with their size. Several other criteria such as their color, the presence of imperfections or even scraps influence their classification and their value. There can be up to 26 different quality grades, which are used to define their price.

Here are the main grades of cashew nuts:

  • W320: Whole nut
  • LWP (Large White Pieces) : Half-piece walnuts
  • SWP (Small White Pieces): Nuts in small pieces

Why are there chopped walnuts?

During the shelling and preparation stages of the nuts, more or less 30% of the production is devalued... and often wasted due to lack of demand. Our eating habits have in fact accustomed us to only wanting to buy whole nuts, and if possible those of the largest size.

hands with chopped cashews
Bag of degraded cashew nuts

In the conventional market, it is therefore essentially visual qualities that are valued. However, the flavor and texture of cashew are almost identical between a large nut and a piece. And of course the conventional market does not take into account in its classifications the quality of life of producers and workers, nor the ecological aspects of the cultivation and marketing of nuts.

So how to choose nuts?

Obviously, at Umano we have a different vision. Our selection criteria value:

  • The well-being of producers;
  • The health of the planet;
  • The fight against food waste.

That's why, when we decided to import organic, fair trade cashews, we asked our customers. The majority told us that they have no problem offering nuts in half-pieces (LWP for Large White Pieces). Especially since many grocery store customers buy cashews in bulk to process them or integrate them into recipes. Since Fairtrade and organic cashews are obviously more expensive than what is usually found on the market, selecting LWP allows you to absorb the price difference. All while offering a fair price to organic cashew producers and avoiding food waste.

Cashew nut sorting room

During our visit to our producing partner in Burkina Faso in 2022, we also noted that a significant quantity of cashew is downgraded because they are small pieces (SWP for Small White Pieces). As the producers' cooperative had no demand for these SWPs, we offered to add them to our offer.

SWPs (small pieces of nuts) are perfect for processing into milk, yogurt, spreads, fauxmage, or for using in granolas, sprinkling on salads and much more.

We now offer you the three most common grades to satisfy all your needs, while keeping a very affordable price.


In summary, if you have a small budget and use cashews mainly for processing or cooking, opt for SWP. If you can't get enough of the feel of a nice whole nut, go with the W320s. And if you're hesitant, between the two, there are LWPs!

So, in 2023, don't you think it's time to value cashews based on criteria other than their size and color?