Commercial cultivation of the macadamia nut began in Australia in the 1870s, through the establishment of plantations. Prior to their commercial cultivation, macadamias were eaten by Australian Aborigines, who harvested nuts that had fallen to the ground. In the 1890s, the macadamia nut was introduced to some regions of the USA, such as Hawaii. Commercial processing of macadamia nuts was limited, however, until 1954, when the first mechanized processing plant was established, which was to break the shells open safely without damaging the nuts. Today, macadamias are commercially important in the USA, Australia, New Zealand, South Africa, and parts of South and Central America.
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