Kenya’s horticulture sector is facing low earnings this year from avocado exports as 40 percent of the fruits have been affected by the ongoing drought even as the export market opens next week. Exporters will be forced to pack at least 24 fruits in order to fill one carton because of the smaller size, as opposed to 16, which is normally ideal when the produce is of the right size.
The Horticulture Directorate says most of the avocados in western Kenya have matured and are ready for export, which is set to start on March 24 having been pushed from the original date of March 15.
Horticulture Directorate head Benjamin Tito: “We may not get sizes 12 to 16 because of the drought that’s led to smaller-sized fruits.” He added that the ongoing drought, which has been witnessed since October last year, will have a significant impact on earnings this year. Revenue from horticultural sales abroad amounted to Sh120.26 billion last year from Sh133.23 billion in the prior year, provisional export statistics from the CBK indicate.
[ Sh100 = €0.72 ]