NAIROBI -- Kenya's integrated agro-business firm Kakuzi said Thursday it has secured approval from the Kenya Plant Health Inspectorate Service (KEPHIS) to process and prepare export-grade fresh avocados for the Chinese market.
Kakuzi managing director Chris Flowers said the firm said they secured the approval following a stringent phytosanitary audit for its extensive Kakuzi farms and packhouse.
"We recently were subjected to a series of random and procedural inspections by KEPHIS, and I am glad to announce that the Kakuzi's orchards and Packhouse are among the first approved large scale farming and packing operations, cleared for the Chinese market," Flowers said in a statement issued in the Kenyan capital, Nairobi.
He said the approval comes following the recent signing of two bilateral trade protocols to facilitate the export of fresh avocados and aquatic products from Kenya to China.
KEPHIS has been undertaking facility audits to ensure the integrity of local packhouses earmarked to provide packaging solutions for avocado exports as part of the implementation of the protocols.
Flowers said the Kakuzi fresh produce Packhouse and Orchards had been inspected and found to be compliant with the high international standards.
Kenya and China signed bilateral trade protocols allowing the export of avocado products in January. The protocols provide specific phytosanitary and inspection quarantine, veterinary sanitary requirements that avocado and aquatic farmers must comply respectively with before exporting their produce to China.