China received the first consignment of fresh avocado exports from Sunripe Kenya on Wednesday after reversing an initial requirement that only allowed frozen produce.
China’s MFA African Affairs Department Director-General Wu Peng tweeted, “First batch of Kenyan fresh avocado arrived in Shanghai on July 27!
“I’m told Chinese importers show strong interests in these high-quality avocados and plan to import in a bigger scale. I look forward to more good news on the import of African agri-products.”
First batch of #Kenyan🇰🇪 fresh avocado arrived in #Shanghai on 27th July! I’m told #Chinese importers show strong interests in these high-quality avocado and plan to import in a bigger scale. I look forward to more good news on the import of African agri-products. pic.twitter.com/Hym7DXWMDS
— 吴鹏 Wu Peng (@WuPeng_MFAChina) July 29, 2022
Agricultural firm Kakuzi PLC also said it had received approval to send its Hass variety of avocado consignment to be shipped out to China on July 30, 2022.
The Kenya Plant Health Inspectorate Services (KEPHIS) confirmed that the Chinese National Plant Protection Organisation (NPPO) had approved fifteen (15) orchards, nine (9) packhouses, and one (1) fumigation facility, including Kakuzi’s orchards and packhouses, to export fresh avocado to China.
“The field harvests started this (Friday) morning, and we hope to prepare the first consignment to be shipped to China this weekend,” Kakuzi Managing Director, Mr Chris Flowers, said in a statement.
“In this trial phase, we intend to test the entire system capacity and fix any challenges between ourselves, the phytosanitary protocols facility, and Kenya Plant Health Inspectorate Services (Kephis) ahead of the planned larger shipments before the end of the next quarter.”
Historic moment this evening as we witnessed the export cargo loading of our inaugural fresh avocado fruits to Shanghai, China.
The inaugural fresh avocado exports to China have been airlifted from JKIA this evening as part of our market diversification efforts. #KenyanAvocado pic.twitter.com/qHqEuCESCC
— Kakuzi Plc (@Kakuzi_Plc) July 30, 2022
During its 94th Kakuzi PLC Annual General Meeting (AGM), the firm said that to sustain the value contribution of its Hass Avocado crop, it will be undertaking an 18% expansion for the popular fruit. The ongoing field development will see the addition of avocado trees from the current 980 ha to 1160 ha in the next four years.
In 2021, Kakuzi offered farmers a total payment of Kshs 335 per carton exported, representing 87% of the net return.
According to data from the Kenya Economic Survey 2021, earnings from exports of horticultural produce increased by 3.9 per cent, from KSh 144.6 billion in 2019 to KSh 150.2 billion in 2020.
The export of fresh avocados to China follows the early January signing of two protocols to facilitate bilateral trade, mainly the export of avocados and aquatic products from Kenya to China.