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ITC supports Kenya’s avocado push

The International Trade Centre (ITC) is backing a US$1mn project to enhance trade competitiveness of Kenya’s avocado sector

A commodity business plan (CBP) was recently launched to enter new markets for Kenya’s avocado industry and boost exports of the fruit. The project is expected to help the Kenyan avocado sector increase exports to existing and new markets, which will, in turn, ensure higher revenues for producers.

“The target market study in the avocado commodity business plan does not only address the supply concerns in the EU market, including the Scandinavian countries, but also addresses issues related to market entry in the Gulf markets of the Middle East, especially Qatar, the UAE and Saudi Arabia,” said Zakayo Magara, managing director of Kenya’s Horticultural Crops Directorate (HCD), at the launch ceremony.

The CBP has been developed in close collaboration with HCD, the Export Promotion Council (EPC) of Kenya and the Fresh Produce Exporters Association of Kenya (FPEAK). It is part of a three-year US$1mn project under the Netherlands Trust Fund (III) programme, which is managed and implemented by ITC and funded by the Dutch Centre for the Promotion of Imports from Developing Countries (CBI).

“The ultimate objective of this commodity business plan is to guide the increase in avocado exports from Kenya, reduce erosion of market shares and increase smallholder revenues,” said Robert Skidmore, chief of ITC’s sector competitiveness section.

Upcoming activities under the project include training small and medium enterprises on export market planning; compliance and certification with GlobalGap, an agricultural good practices standard; farm and post-harvest management; and fruit fly control techniques.