Kenya Plant Health Inspectorate Service (KEPHIS), a government parastatal responsible for quality of agricultural inputs and produce has introduced new requirements to guide avocado farmers and traders interested to grow and export the fruit to the Republic of South Africa in a bid to guard the market.
Kenya lost the market in 2007 after South Africa claimed that most of the key fruit production areas in the country were infested with fruit fly. However, after intervention by to Kephis and Kenya Agricultural Livestock Research Organisation (Kalro) August last year the export market was reopened in ending more than 10 years of standoff.
It is because of this that the Kephis has introduced fresh regulations that will see the parastatal involved in almost every step of production and export to ensure that the country does not only lose the South African market but also other key global markets.
“We cannot afford to lose the market again due to poor production as a result of negligent by either farmers or traders as it happened before,” Said Mr. George Momanyi, Kephis.
“This is part of Kephis’ responsibility to prevent adverse impact on the economy, the environment and human health by ensuring up to standard produce.”