NAIROBI, Kenya, Dec 9 – Avocado exports generated Sh14 billion for the country in 2020 making Kenya among the top African exporter for the highly sought commodity in the world.
This is according to the Horticulture Crops Directorate who revealed that the country exported 68, 000 tons of the fruit between January and October last year.
The Directorate Director Benjamin Tito says Kenya will reap more for the commodity having already exported Avocado worth Sh14.48 billion in the same period this year as volumes in the local and international market went up to 84.5 million kilos from 70.3 million kilograms recorded between January-November 2020.
According to Tito, Murang’a is the leading producer with 31 percent of Kenya’s total production followed closely by Kiambu, Nakuru, Kisii, Nyamira, Meru and Bomet Counties.
Kenya will also start avocado exports to South Korea in March 2022 as part of the country’s horticulture business expansion strategy.
Latest data from Fresh Produce Exporters Association of Kenya (FPEAK) shows that Kenya is the world’s third-largest producer of avocados, with a market share of 2.1 percent.
The report ranked Kenya 8th globally in 2019 in export of avocados behind Mexico, Netherlands, Peru, Spain, Chile, Colombia and the United States.
Among the top exporters, the fastest-growing avocados exporters since 2015 were: Colombia (up 1,607 percent), Dominican Republic (up 424.2 percent), Morocco (up 206.6 percent) and Kenya (up 161.5 percent).
The move comes even as horticulture earnings grew by 6.4 percent to Sh8.7 billion in the 11 months to November compared to the corresponding period last year, attributed to higher demand for Kenyan produce in the world market.
Kenya earned Sh145.4 billion between January-November, up from Sh136.7 billion last year.
According to Tito the higher demand for Kenyan fruits, vegetables and flowers pushed up the volumes by 30 percent in the period, which helped to boost the earnings despite lower average export prices compared to those seen in 2020.
“The total value of horticultural produce exported in 2021 from January to November rose from Sh136.7 billion in 2020 to Sh145.4 billion in 2021 representing a six percent increase. The total volume of exports increased by 85 million kilos, representing a 30 percent rise that was attributed to increased demand especially flowers and vegetables,” said Tito.