Pine nuts or kernels are referred to small seeds which are eatable. They are extracted from the cones of various species of pine. Out of the more than 100 different species of Pinus that exist worldwide, only 29 species generate edible nuts according to Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO, 1995 and 1998). However, the commercial species which are traded locally or internationally numbered to twenty only. Recently, pine nuts have received a huge appreciation from international markets. The seeds (pine nuts) are called piñones in Spanish and pinoli or pignoli in Italian. However, the seeds of the pinyon pines (Pinus edulis and Pinus monophylla), which produce in the south-western US and in northern Mexico, are known as pinon nuts. Western world exhibits a keen interest in consuming exotic edible nuts that is growing as a component of their raw food or in the form of snacks (Ballin, 2012). Nuts are an intrinsic part of the Mediterranean food, and they are often included into the regular diets of human beings which are believed to be very healthy. This article gives you useful information regarding pine nuts of Pakistan. Commonly, it is known as chilghoza pine.
Being student of forestry, I did my research on the decline or diversification of pine products market in European Union, at University of Padova, Italy. The data of research has been derived from EUROSTAT database 2014. The database provides information reported by the countries in European Union. The 28 member states of European Union (EU28) have imported 10626 million euro worth of pine nuts from the world. The quantity of those pine nuts was 2358,000 tons. Surprisingly Pakistan ranked as the second biggest producer of pine nuts just after China. I have compiled a list of top seven countries in the world which are the key players (see figures). This ranking is based on monetary value as well as on quantity. The total export value is more than 45 million euro for almost 2.5 thousand tons exported last year by Pakistan. The top seven importers of world are Switzerland, US, Norway, Angola, Brazil, China and Russia for pine nuts. China is in both sides of the line (as importer and exporter) because it is importing some quantity for processing and then exporting.
Among top seven countries from EU28 member states in terms of value Germany, Italy, Spain, UK, Netherlands, France and Belgium are the biggest importers. On the other hand, Germany, Spain, Italy, Portugal, Netherlands, UK and France represent as exporting states on the same basis. You might be surprising why most of importing countries are exporters as well. It is due to the reason of re-exporting after processing. Similarly, in terms of quantity, Italy, Germany, Spain, Netherlands, UK, France and Belgium rank in a subsequent manner. However, among exporters, Germany, Spain, Italy, Portugal, Netherlands, UK, and Denmark came on top seven member states of EU28.