Avocados market in Kenya is under scrutiny following a threat from China to ban them if they did not comply with the stringent entry rules including freezing the fruits. Small farmers who make 70 per cent of the growers are locked out China’s outrageous proposition that could see their businesses collapsed.
As promised Kenya Plant Health Inspectorate Service (Kephis) the lead Government Agency responsible for the issuance of Phytosanitary Certificate, which oversees the export of avocados has found a way to restore China’s confidence in Kenyan avocados, and help small scale farmers tap into this lucrative market.
In partnership with KenTrade and other regulatory Government Agencies, they have documented all the requisite procedures and up-to-date information on what it takes to export avocados following recently signed trade deal with the export frozen avocados to China that will result in absorbing over 40 per cent of Kenya’s avocado produce.
The procedures that have been documented and published on exporting of avocados include how to obtain food hygiene license for the packhouse facility, packhouse inspection report, farm inspection report & export license, register as an exporter and to register for user training on Kenya TradeNet System, the online cargo clearance platform managed by KenTrade and are available on InfoTradeKenya Portal.
Development of the portal, in which the procedures have been published was in response to a gap identified in cargo clearance information among the trading community and the need to consolidate all the procedures into one portal that is accessible to everyone involved in International Trade. With the availability of export procedures in the portal, traders will save the time, cost and effort that would be spent on searching for trade-related information, seeking to Kenya’s competitiveness by providing real-time import, export and transit information to the trading community.
According to KenTrade Chief Executive Officer Amos Wangora, the implementation of the InfoTradeKenya portal is in compliance with Article 1.1 of the World Trade Organization (WTO) Trade Facilitation Agreement which encourages member states to publish and make information easily accessible to enable governments, traders, and other interested parties to become acquainted with them.
“InfoTradeKenya is a platform which the Government uses for publishing trade regulatory information from relevant government offices, ministries and agencies that impose controls on trade,” he said adding that the implementation of the portal has improved transparency, simplified the procedures used by traders to access information and process documentation.
Other documented and published procedures for avocado export are on how to obtain Certificate of Origin, export clearance, Phytosanitary Certificate, export health certificate and also how to clear the avocado consignment at the customs. Traders can find a step by step guide to the related procedures by accessing the portal via infotradekenya.go.ke