Kenya named among continent’s top avocado exporters

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Kenya ranks among world’s fastest growing exporters of avocado even as demand for the fruit grows in China and Europe.

Colombia tops the list of world’s fastest avocado exporters, followed by Morocco. Kenya comes at position three, being the only country in East and Central Africa that produces avocado.

A 2019 half year survey shared at the ongoing World Avocado Congress in Colombia indicated that Kenya has overtaken South Africa in the production of the fruit.

TRADE PACT

Earlier this year, Kenya and China signed a trade pact that gave it the nod to export avocado to the Asian country.

A survey undertaken in 2018 puts Colombia, Morocco, Kenya and Germany as the fastest growing exporters of the fruit.

United Kingdom, Europe and Asia are the biggest markets for avocado. Kenya is also placed seventh in the list of leading exporters of avocado in 2018.

The list is dominated by Spanish speaking countries, with Mexico raking $2.4 billion, Netherlands ($ 733.8 billion), Peru ($ 722.8m) in third, Spain ($ 346 m), Chile ($ 323.2 m), the USA ($ 179 m) as before Kenya seals off the top seven having got $ 118 million (Sh11.8 billion).

AVOCADO EXPORTS

According to information from the Kenya National Bureau of Statistics, the country earned Sh6.5 billion and Sh5.2 billion in 2016 and 2015 from avocado exports.

Kenyan delegates are attending the 2019 World Avocado Congress in Medellin, Colombia, as the country focuses on bidding to host the global event in 2023. Murang’a Governor Mwangi wa Iria is attending the conference.

Uasin Gishu County, a region traditionally known as the country’s biggest producer of maize and wheat, is keen to produce avocados. The county government has already given seedlings to farmers in an aggressive push to put at least 1000 acres under avocado.

RIGHT TRACK

Murang’a County is Kenya’s largest producer of avocado. Uasin Gishu County is educating farmers on the need to diversify agriculture by growing high value crops with avocado, coffee and macadamia.

Already, the county government of Uasin Gishu has facilitated and overseen an agreement between avocado exporter, Habex Agro and farmers.