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    coffee exports

    By George Munene

    About 1,000 coffee farmers from the Kipkelion Coffee Co-operative Society are set to earn Sh103 million from the direct sale of 134.4 metric tons of coffee directly to South Korea.

    The graded AA coffee cherry was sold without going through brokers and fetched the farmers Sh116 a kilogram, 56 per cent more than the Sh76 eaned at the Nairobi coffee auction.

    “For the first time in Kenya’s history, smallholder coffee farmers have done a complete vertical integration of the coffee value chain, displacing the predatory brokers and other greedy intermediaries who have denied us direct access to the market,” read a statement from the society’s chairperson, Samuel Marindany.

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    The export deal was arrived at during the Coffee Expo held in Korea's capital Seoul in July last year. The farmers from several coffee cooperatives in Kericho, Bomet, and Nandi counties were able to strike a deal with a South Korean buyer.

    A presidential task force appointed in March 2016 reviewed the entire coffee chain and identified areas in its production to marketing that required reforms. 

    These have led to reforms such as The Coffee Exchange Regulations, 2020 that allow coffee farmers who were previously forced to go through independent own brokerage firms and directly sell their cherry.

    Related News: Kenya to increase coffee exports to South Korea

    During the flagging off of seven coffee containers for direct sale to South Africa last month, Kericho Governor Paul Chepkwony pointed out; "The power to earn is now wholly in farmers' hands. The market liberalisation will cushion farmers who labor the most from predatory brokers.”

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    By George Munene

    According to The Kenya Plant Health Inspectorate Service (KEPHIS), despite reaching a bilateral agreement that eases access to the South Korean market for the Kenya’s green bananas and broccoli, farmers have only exported less than a combined one tonne of the agriproduce to the East Asian nation.

    This owes to a lack of awareness amongst Kenyan farmers and exporters on the procedure to ship these agricultural commodities.

    “Exporters looking to tap into this underserved export corridor will first need to be registered with the Horticulture Crops Directorate as an exporter for horticultural products, said Diana Aluoch, a Research Assistant at KEPHIS.”

    HCD issues an export license which is presented to KEPHIS. The prospective exporter will then need to present company registration documents, i.e., company director names and a copy of their identity cards, certificate of incorporation, KRA pin and a cover letter with details on who they are and details of the farm’s location and acreage.

    A signed outgrower contract is also required for consolidators to ascertain that they can meet promised export quantities. “Farmers should also know that KEPHIS does not issue out phytosanitary certificates to individual farmers but rather exporters and consolidators,” outlined Diana.

    A one-off commitment fee of Sh15,000 is charged as a deposit for certification cost with a certificate issued for every export tranche and depending on quantity.

    “For export of any other agricultural commodities outside of unripe bananas and broccoli stems, local exporters will need to consult with South Korean ministry of agriculture officials on the export requirements and procedures, as well carrying out thorough checks on the required import permit passes, Aluoch explained.”

    For more information download REQUIREMENTS FOR EXPORT OF UNRIPE BANANAS AND BROCCOLI TO KOREA or reach KEPHIS on Mobile: 0709 891 000

               Phone: 020 661 8000

               Email 1: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

               Email 2: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

    Farmbiz will be hosting an online training course guided Kentrade on training in the exporting process and exactly what registrations you need: how to find out what’s required and how to get help with each requirement on Thursday 17th February, 10-12pm. You can register here: Exporting for farmers training

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    By George Munene

    Talks are ongoing between the Kenyan and Djibouti governments on the export of miraa/khat to the East African country. Kenya is also in talks with The Democratic Republic of Congo and plans to engage other African nations in an effort to find an alternative to the lucrative Somali market where the stimulant remain embargord.

    Related News: Halt in miraa exports grounds Sh16M daily trade

    "In the next two weeks, the trade minister of Djibouti will be in Kenya. We hope to have him visit miraa farms in Mau to show him where and how how the miraa we hope they'll be exporting is farmed," said Lawrence Karanja, Chief Administrative Secretary (CAS), Ministry of Industrialization, Trade & Enterprise Development.

    Speaking in Meru County, the CAS added that there exists plenty of opportunity in agricultural trade with landlocked Djibouti which imports most of it's agroproduce especially fruits such as avocados and bananas.

    Related News: Ministry of agriculture sets up Sh48M credit fund for miraa farmers

    The miraa agricultural sub-sector is the main source of livelihood for up to 50,000 households. A diplomatic impasse which has lasted over 1½ years between Kenya and Somalia--the crop's main export market--has however ground it's trade which netted about Sh16 million daily.

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