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Kenya: Boost for Horticulture Exports

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Kenya’s prospect of increased horticultural exports has received a major boost, after the State laboratory got permission to test chemical pesticide residues.

The Kenya Plant Health Inspectorate Service said its Analytical Chemistry Laboratory was given a clean bill of health to test produce destined for major markets such as the European Union (EU), where Kenya exports most of its flowers, fruits and vegetables.

The lab was re-accredited by the South African National Accreditation Service (SANAS).

Kephis Managing Director Esther Kimani said the move is a major relief to the Kenyan farmers whose produce has had challenges accessing export markets due to undetected chemical residues.

“This re-accreditation means that the laboratory’s competency can be assured. Therefore the pesticide residue monitoring programme which is key to export to the EU meets the requirements of obtaining reliable -and valid data,” Dr Kimani said.

“This will help Kenya’s exports such as beans and peas which are exported with pods, to pass the increased scrutiny on pesticides in the EU market.”

Several Kenyan horticultural products which have been under increased scrutiny recently for their high level of pesticides will now get quality assurance before export.