Opening Markets for Almond Hulls

Taylor Hillman Specialty Crops, Trade

almond hulls
There is surplus of almond hulls in California. That inventory gets larger every year with less dairy production in the state to sell to. Research is looking to find new markets for the excess hulls.

Opening Markets for Almond Hulls

Research is going on right now to explore new markets for almond hulls produced in California. The giant almond industry doesn’t have enough buyers in the state to take all the hulls for animal feed. Beth Van Meter works in global affairs for the Almond Board of California. Van Meter says the board is looking for a way to reduce that surplus. “As many of us already know, there is a surplus of almond hulls here in California, and with the decreasing dairy industry in the state, we need other alternatives to put these hulls,” Van Meter says. “Three areas we are researching is China, the European Union and India.”

Van Meter says China especially is an ideal market for almond hulls. “They have the second largest dairy industry in the world, just behind India,” Van Meter says. “China livestock feed prices are pretty expensive so this would actually be a good partnership to send hulls to China and reduce the surplus of hulls here in California.”

Establishing a market can be very tricky. Van Meter says a lot of research needs to be done to make sure all requirements are met and several things need to be addressed before hulls can hit the seas. “Right now, we are looking at market access issues,” Van Meter says. “There’s things like sanitary and phytosanitary issues that need to be addressed. As well as what are the requirements China needs on our part to get hulls access. Kind of like almonds, we already have access to China, but we need to understand those trade issues first before we actually start shipping.”