The avocado campaign at Kenya Fresh starts in February for the Fuerte variety and March for Hass. “Our company expect to export both conventional and organic Hass and Fuerte via sea and airfreight,” said Prisscilla King’angi from export company Kenya Fresh.
The two main varieties grown in Kenya are Hass which is about 70% and Fuerte at 20%,10% of the production is the Jumbo variety which is a mixture of traditional varieties and hybrids of the two main varieties.
“Our key market is the European Union, mainly The Netherlands, France, Germany and Spain. In recent years Russia has become a key market especially as it prefers the Fuerte variety which is not as popular in EU. We also export to the Middle Eastern countries of UAE, Bahrain, Saudi Arabia and Egypt. In the Far East we export to Malaysia, Hongkong and Singapore.
“We are looking forward to a review of trade protocol with China which currently only allows frozen products, if we can send fresh avocados to China this would be a breakthrough for the industry considering the huge population and the relatively high purchasing power in that country.”
Kenya Fresh, like most exporters have a mixture of their own farms, contracted medium size farmers and they also manage small scale farmers schemes.
The movement restriction which were introduced by the Kenyan government as a response the the Covid pandemic posed challenges for logistics from the farm to the packhouse and onward to the port and Kenya Fresh were faced with fewer transporting hours.
“To be compliant with social distancing while packing we were required to hire less people than usual. Fortunately since most of our avocados are shipped by sea we were not limited on space such as we experienced with our vegetable business. A few customers who receive avocados via airfreight were affected by the reduction in space for air freight.”
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