Kenya’s agricultural exports to the European markets are set to increase following the completion of a Sh250million laboratory that will ensure produce meet international standards.
The facility will ensure fertilisers, seeds, soils and water are tested and approved for quality farming.
It will ensure healthy plants, safe trade and sustainable agro-environment for the development of the agricultural sector.
While opening the laboratory, constructed by the Kenya Plant Health Inspectorate (Kephis) in collaboration with the European Union (EU), Deputy President William Ruto said the project was a milestone.
“The factory will help the Government to access the international rules for seed, fertiliser and water testing that aid in promoting of trade between Kenya and EU among other countries.
“With this laboratory complex, Kephis can now have the opportunity to ensure we have good quality seeds, fertilisers, tested soils and water that are beneficial to our farmers,” said Mr Ruto.
The Deputy President asked exporters and farmers to make use of the facility to access new markets for their produce for exports.
“The value of the laboratory will be measured in what we achieve in exporting food products and the access to markets outside the country for our tea, coffee, flowers among other farm produce,” said Mr Ruto.
Mr Ruto said the agricultural sector is a key driver to economic growth.
“We are putting more emphasis on the development of the agricultural sector which remains the engine for the country’s economic growth by coming up with initiatives aimed at adding value to farmers’ produce,” said Mr Ruto.