Kenyan farmers exported less than a ton of bananas and broccoli to Korea this season, despite a bilateral agreement between the two nations about five years ago.
Business Daily Africa reports that the Kenya Plant Health Inspectorate Service (Kephis) attributed the low levels to the lack of awareness among farmers in the country.
The bilateral agreement initiated by Kenya in May 2015 aimed to facilitate the access of various products to the Korean market. It was a move that allowed the country to export unripe bananas and broccoli, which would not require pest risk analysis like other products do.
Kephis urged interested groups and individuals to register with the Directorate for Horticultural Crops as an exporter of horticultural products.
“Kephis would like to encourage youth, women and farmers to increase the amount of unripe bananas and broccoli entering Korea as the market for these goods is open,” the agency said.
The Ministry of Commerce last week expressed concern about low exports of green bananas and broccoli to the Korean market, even though the market was ready.
A phytosanitary certificate from the supervisory authority is required for the export of both products.
“[Growers] You should register with Kephis by submitting legal documents that require credentials to access the electronic certification system in order to make electronic phytosanitary inspection and issuance applications, ”the regulator added.
Phytosanitary certificates are issued during the inspection and confirm that the bananas are free from pests and pest damage and meet the quality requirements.