Kenya to resume mango exports to Europe after eight years
Kenya is resuming its multi-billion shilling mango export business to the EU market this September, according to The Standard.
This revival of shipments comes after a self-imposed ban was put into place from interceptions due to fruit flies.
The EU approved the resumption of exports after tests showed reduced levels of pest incidence.
To maintain market standards, the Kenya Plant Health Inspectorate Service (Kephis), is developing a certification protocol that will ensure mangoes are exported with zero pests.
Additionally, the U.S. Agency for International Development (USAID) is ready to partner with the private sector to fund hot water treatment facilities to help eliminate fruit flies before export.
"What we have done is to develop a certification protocol, currently being validated by the stakeholders in the value chain," Kephis Chief Inspector George Momanyi was reported as saying.
“The tool is to ensure certification is good. We will ensure we go by it. There is the hot water treatment which USAID committed to financing part of the private sector to invest in.”
Mr Momanyi said applying newer technologies to mango shipments will be a game-changer in maintaining the standards.
The resumption of exports comes at a time when there is a huge gap in the global market as big suppliers such as China and India are in off-peak season.
“One particular advantage we have over the main suppliers is that our peak season is between November and March."
"We are at a point where the big producers are off-season so we need to leverage in and get into the market,” Momanyi told the news source.
Kenya is ranked between 10 and 15 in terms of production and export of mangoes.
Kibwezi Agro Ltd Managing Director Mutheu Kithuma said they are not expecting challenges with the quality of the fruit after the exports resume.