KENYA – The Agriculture and Food Authority (AFA) has introduced a new directive declaring that all mango exports will go through inspection before exports to prevent cases of mango consignments being mixed with avocadoes.

AFA Director-General Willis Audi noted in the statement that the new regulations were put in place following findings from export clearance of the consignments.

“It has come to our attention that following the closure of the Avocado harvesting season and export by sea, some exporters are mixing consignments of mango with avocado for sea shipment,” announced Audi.

“All avocado and mango consignments for export are required to undergo inspection by the Directorate before an Export Certificate is issued.”

The Authority has cautioned exporters about mixing the two fruits, stating that it is against the provisions of the Crops (Horticultural Crops) Regulations, 2020 Section 20 (5).

Following the new directives, mango exporters are now advised to apply for physical inspection consignments by Monday, November 13, 2023, clearly indicating the location of the house to facilitate inspection.

They are also required to ensure that the quantity being exported for which the permit is being sought fully constitutes mangoes in the consignment.

Mango exporters who do not comply with the regulations risk losing their dealership in the export business.

Kenya exports fresh mango mainly to the Middle East, with small quantities of processed fruit (dried) to the Netherlands, UK, and Italy, among others.

These directives come barely a week after the authority issued a notice closing the exporting season of avocados.

The notice was issued through the Horticultural Crops Directorate (HCD) and applies to Hass, Pinkerton, Fuerte and Jumbo avocado varieties.

To arrive at this conclusion, the Directorate undertook a survey to authenticate the maturity indices of the avocado fruits in the major production zones.

Following the findings of the survey, HCD notified all avocado stakeholders on the new official closing date of the export and harvest season alongside other directives.

“Export clearance (including fruit consignments from the EAC region) shall be granted for air shipment,
subject to inspection by the Directorate,”
 reads the notice. “Traceability information will be required for all consignments.”

The notice, as outlined by the directorate, applies to all exporters, importers, and processors.

“We shall continue to closely monitor Avocado maturity trends and patterns, review the notice in mid-January 2024 and guide appropriately,” added AFA in the notice.

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