Horticulture Stakeholders Consultative Meeting Held at HCD HQ on 28th November 2019

FPEAK held a meeting with horticulture stakeholders on Thursday, 28th November 2019 at the Horticulture Crops Directorate HQ at JKIA. FPEAK Chairman, Apollo Owour, indicated that the EU has become more stringent on matters food safety and have developed a draft of regulations e.g the 2019/1793 which are tailored to address this issue. The EU has lowered the MRL’s for several pesticides allowed in produce entering its market mostly ones used in citrus fruits, vegetables and bananas.

New MRL limits for a number of agrochemicals have been set at 0.01 mg/kg against the international standard (CODEX) that of 2.0 mg/kg MRL level. This means more care needs to be taken when spraying and harvesting of fresh produce.

Other issues that were raised during the meeting by participants are;       

  • Poaching/ side selling. This usually happened during the peak demand periods especially around December. There is need to have ethical practices adopted by all in the business to curb this problem.
  • The EU has revised some MRLs to LOD. There is need to lobby for better trade practices based on available data and also to have a list of these pesticides made available to exporters for information. The specific MRL data for all
    pesticides on specific crop produce can be found in the link below;
    https://ec.europa.eu/food/plant/pesticides/eu-pesticides-database/public/ event=pesticide.residue.selection&language=EN
  • It was observed that while we seek to maintain our market share within the EU, there is need to ensure that the
    produce consumed locally is also safe for Kenyans, and free from MRLs exceedance as per CODEX standards.
  • There is need for county governments to invest more in the provision of extension services in order to fill the existing gap on farmer training especially on safe and correct use of pesticides.
  • There is need for traders to invest in field operations especially with regard to hiring qualified, experienced quality teams because lack of capacity hinders proper supervision hence lack of compliance.
  • Use of agrochemicals on crops which they have not been registered on. Agrochemicals should be used on the crops that they have been registered on.
  • Agrovets should ensure that they only sell appropriate chemicals to growers of beans and peas as per recommendations provided.

Action Points;
1. There is need to revise the list for products for whose MRL’s have been revised to Level of Detection (LOD). This may include revising the PHIs.
2. All exporters must ensure henceforth that they employ proper traceability systems so as to guarantee food safety.
3. All exporters must declare their supply agents to Horticulture Crops Directorate (HCD) for registration. HCD needs to regulate them using same criteria as exporters.
4. Exporters and growers are asked to utilize the trained Spray Service Providers (SSPs) when spraying agrochemicals.
5. A team was proposed to be set up from both the private and public sectors so as to steer actualization of the set action plans. 


In attendance were exporters, Horticulture Crops Directorate, Pests Control Products Board, Council of Governors and USAID-KCDMS.

Leave a Reply