The first batch of Kenya’s fresh avocado exports has finally landed in the Chinese market.
The arrival comes 26 days after Industrialisation, Trade and Enterprise Development Chief Administrative Secretary (CAS) David Osiany flagged off a lorry with fresh avocados from the Sunripe export farm in Limuru, Kiambu County.
In a press statement by Kenya Export Promotion and Branding Agency (KEPROBA), the official handover ceremony was graced by Kenya’s Ambassador to China Muthoni Gichohi in Beijing.
The entrance of the fresh avocado into the Chinese market also marked the first export of such fruits from Africa.
Amb Gichohi applauded the efforts made by the two governments and affirmed Kenya’s commitment to supporting the business communities in both countries as they look forward to enhancing trade facilitation as well as market access to their products and services to China.
Other fresh prioritised agricultural products the two countries aim to fast-track for export clearance include legumes, flowers, vegetables, herbs, mangoes, peanuts, meat, hides, skins, bixa, gum Arabica and myrr.
KEPROBA’s Chief Executive Officer Wilfred Marube described the Chinese market as a big win for Kenya.
“China has the potential to pull Kenya’s economic growth through one export of avocado. The factor endowment for production favours Kenya. With the high population, exports to China will additionally increase foreign exchange earnings as well as youth and women employment,” Dr Malube said.
He urged Kenyans to popularise avocados and satisfy the Chinese market, noting that by so doing, many people’s lives will be improved.
“Kenya aims to export over 100,000 tonnes of avocados. The 1.4 billion population in China is a huge market for Kenya not only for avocados but also for other fresh produce such as mangoes and bananas,” said Dr Marube.
KEPROBA is a State corporation established after the merger of the Export Promotion Council and Brand Kenya Board. Its mandate is to implement export promotion and nation branding initiatives and policies to promote Kenya’s export of goods and services.
Kenya is currently the world’s sixth largest producer of avocados and the largest in Africa. The fruits are mainly grown by small-scale farmers.
The export of avocados to China has huge potential and experts estimate that the exports could account for up to 40 per cent of Kenya’s total avocado output. The market opportunity is also very huge as close to 400 tonnes can be shipped each week.