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Lactose-intolerant Americans spur cashew boom in Ivory Coast

ABIDJAN _ Salty-snack junkies, the lactose-intolerant and lovers of Asian food are providing an economic boost for farmers in the war-torn northern provinces of Ivory Coast. The West African country is poised to surpass India as the world's top grower of cashews. Ivory Coast output has tripled in the past decade, including a jump after the civil war ended in 2011, industry data show. At the same time, prices have rallied as global exports surged along with rising consumption in the U.S., China and India. Long a staple in Asian cooking, the nut increasingly is eaten raw as a snack, and companies like WhiteWave Foods Co. use it to make non-dairy beverages and ice cream. While people...