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Farmers to peel, freeze avocados in stringent Chinese export rules



A logistical nightmare and the high costs of meeting tough conditions required for the export of Kenyan avocados to China are threatening to choke the lucrative deal inked last month.

The stringent conditions, which include requiring a farmer to peel and freeze the fruit before export, could lock out thousands of small-scale farmers who are eying the world’s largest market.

According to the rules seen by Saturday Nation, a farmer has to install machines and coolers for peeling and freezing of the fruit ahead of export.

They will have to freeze the peeled fruits to negative 30 degrees Celsius and chill further to negative 18 degrees while on transit to the destination.

This means that farmers will have to invest heavily in cold rooms and meticulously follow all the requirements to reap from the deal billed as the game changer in Kenya’s agriculture.

The peeling and freezing requirement adds to 56 steps a trader has to take shuttling from one government agency to another, to get an avocado export clearance.

Kenya Plant Health Inspectorate Service (Kephis) yesterday warned the conditions set by the Chinese might limit small-scale farmers’ access to the market.

“Given the requirements, most small-scale farmers cannot afford to sell their avocados to China,” Kephis Managing Director Esther Kimani said.

READ ALSO:   Kenyan avocados cleared to enter the expansive Chinese market

The peeling of the fruit before freezing is a new condition for the export of avocados. It is not in the regulations guiding export of the fruit to existing export markets, including the European Union, the Middle East and Asia.

Kenya’s journey to the 1.4 billion strong Chinese market has taken seven years as Beijing has been uncomfortable with the presence of fruit flies in Nairobi’s avocados.

It took an okay from Chinese inspectors in March and a visit to the Asian nation by President Kenyatta in April to unlock the avocado export deal.

The inspectors from the Chinese National Plant Protection Organisation flew in to undertake a rigorous risk analysis including inspection of local avocado fruits, farms, laboratories and holding bays for the fruit at the airports.

While they gave a clean bill of health that led to the signing of the bilateral pact, the requirements they gave in order to have local avocados flown to Beijing are more stringent than those of the existing markets.

Stakeholders now fear the conditions could lock out thousands of Kenyan farmers targeted by the deal.

A kilogramme of avocado fetches up to Sh2,000 ($20) in China compared to Kenya’s Sh80 while avocado powder in the Asian country could earn up to Sh10,000 per kilo.

READ ALSO:   Kenyan avocados cleared to enter the expansive Chinese market

“If we do not comply, China will suspend the exports and continuous non- compliance will lead to a total ban,” warned Dr Kimani, saying Kephis had upped its antenna to protect the deal.

Mr Amos Wangora, the CEO of KenTrade, an agency that facilitates export business, said the way out for farmers was to pool together in cooperatives so as to enjoy the economies of scale around transport, refrigeration and other expenses.

Fresh Produce Consortium of Kenya (FPCK) chief executive Okisegere Ojepat said that the Chinese want frozen fruits because they are still wary of fruit flies, scales, and traceability issues.

“We hope to address these concerns in due course so that our fruits are fully accepted,” said Mr Ojepat who also sits in the Kephis committee on phytosanitary issues.

He noted that full benefits from the agreement could begin to be realised from next year, as the available fruits are not enough.

source:Daily Nation

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JKIA ranked second fastest growing in air cargo globally



Jomo Kenyatta International Airport has been ranked as the second fastest growing airport in the latest world cargo ranking for airports that handled more than 250,000 metric tonnes of air cargo.

This was revealed in the Airports Council International (ACI) latest World Airport Traffic Report, which highlights top airports for passengers, cargo and aircraft movements and showcases the world’s fastest growing airports for 2018

JKIA was only beaten by Rockford, an expansive air cargo hub in the United States, which was the fastest-growing airport in 2018 as the e-commerce freight hub for online retail giant Amazon.

According to the report, JKIA was ranked second in the ‘Fastest Growing Airports category, after it handled more than 342,000 metric tons of air cargo in 2018, marking a 25% growth from 2017.

Kenya Airports Authority (KAA) has credited the notable growth at JKIA to substantial increase in air cargo traffic to and from Europe, Asia, America as well as recent additions China and Australia.

KAA also said the country’s biggest airport has recently transformed its air cargo management and also embraced participation of public and private sectors hence its improvement in global standing.

The authority said the construction of several modern transit sheds at Jomo Kenyatta International Airport has seen the airport’s overall cargo grow to 1.2million tons annually.

READ ALSO:   Kenyan avocados cleared to enter the expansive Chinese market

“This is an exciting time for Kenya, the face of cargo is changing, and we are positioning JKIA as the premier cargo distribution center for online commerce companies in the region,” said KAA CEO Jonny Anderson.

Hong Kong International Airport, Memphis International Airport, Shanghai Pudong International Airport, Incheon International Airport and Ted Stevens Anchorage International Airport lead in total cargo volumes respectively.

The report further found that, in total, the world’s airports accommodated 8.8 billion passengers, 122.7 million metric tonnes of cargo, and 99.9 million aircraft movements.

JKIA currently handles an estimated 6.5 million passengers annually.

BY Nairobi News

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VIDEO: Chairlady of Kenya North America Diaspora Sacco K-NADS visits Mahiga Homes Projects



Mahiga Homes Company continues to attract the attention of Kenyans living in the US and other countries in around the world following the successful completion of various projects in record time and handing over the keys to the owners.

Recently, the Chairlady of  Kenya North America Diaspora Sacco (K-NADS) Dr. Lucy Ndegwa Mackenzie, paid a courtesy visit to the company’s projects in Ruiru and Kenyatta road  and she expressed her satisfaction with the work they have undertaken so far.

“It is a great project especially because the roads really good,” said Dr Mackenzie.

Rock Gardens Ruiru‘s construction progress is on course. Some units are at foundation while most of them are at walling level and others at roofing level. The estate comprises of 75 luxurious 3 bedroom bungalows.

“As you will see in the video below, she was very impressed by the good work the trusted developer is doing, Said Peter Nyaga,” the Company’s CEO.

The projects currently on sale are:

Rockvilla III Estate in Joska. Deposit Ksh 1.6M

Osoit II Gardens in Kitengela: Deposit Ksh 1.7M.

The Riverfront in Ruiru: Deposit Ksh 2M.


K-NADS  currently has of over 1000 members women living in or has returned to Kenya from North America.

READ ALSO:   Kenyan avocados cleared to enter the expansive Chinese market

For more info Call/WhatsApp +254720460413

or visit

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Firm that sold DP Ruto Weston hotel land speaks out



A travel agency has defended the ownership of the piece of land on which Nairobi’s Weston Hotel stands, arguing that the title deed was acquired legally and that the airports regulator has no claim to the property.

In documents filed in court, Priority Limited says the title to the land was obtained in good faith, is legitimate and cannot be faulted through the petition or any other case.

Through the law firm of Katwa & Kemboy, the company says that being the registered owner of the parcel serves as conclusive evidence of ownership.

The company has further stated that the Kenya Civil Aviation Authority has no “worthy evidence,” to claim ownership of the land hosting hotel associated with Deputy President William Ruto.

KCAA has filed a suit in court seeking to reclaim the land and has opposed a deal between Weston and the National Land Commission (NLC) for the hotel to compensate the authority so that it can continue occupying the land.

In the case filed in June, KCAA said NLC did not have the jurisdiction to preside over the complaint on compensation for the land, and wants the hotel demolished and the property handed back to it.

Based on fraud

READ ALSO:   Kenyan avocados cleared to enter the expansive Chinese market

Priority Limited was allocated the land that was later transferred to Weston in a deal that KCAA says was based on fraud.

In response to the KCAA petition, Priority Ltd has denied allegations of fraud on the title, arguing that KCAA is yet to table documents in court as proof of the fraud.

The company has also contested KCAA demands for revocation of the title deed, arguing that the authority is motivated by ulterior motives.

Records at the registry show that Priority Limited is owned by Paul Chirchir and Mathews Otieno, and has filed with the State documents revealing who are its bankers, auditors and lawyers.

KCAA said under section 14 of the NLC Act, the commission’s mandate to review grants and terms of public land expired five years from commencement date of the Act, which was May 12, 2012.

It therefore argued that the commission’s mandate to review grants and dispositions of public land expired in May 2017.

Deal brokered

The agency filed the case to challenge the deal brokered between NLC and the owners of Weston Hotel.

“NLC had no powers to review grants and dispositions by January 25, 2019, which is more than one year eight months late. This suggests deliberate delay by the NLC to frustrate the KCAA,” reads part of the pleadings filed in court.

READ ALSO:   Kenyan avocados cleared to enter the expansive Chinese market

In the decision, delivered on January 25, 2019, NLC recognised and emphasised KCAA’s entitlement to the piece of land remained unchallenged and noted that Weston Hotel and the initial owners of the land, Priority Ltd and Monene Investments Ltd, irregularly procured the registration of the land. It then ordered the company to compensate KCAA.

But in the papers filed in court by James Orengo and Otiende Amollo, KCAA insists that it owns the land and any entity with a different title procured it through illegality, fraud and corruption.

BY Business Daily

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