Kakuzi PLC will train small-scale avocado farmers through an e-learning agricultural extension program branded Kakuzi Avocademy that will assist them to improve the quality of their crop.
The programme targets farmers wishing to receive professional tips on quality avocado husbandry.
The online Kakuzi Avocademy platform, according to Kakuzi Plc Managing Director Chris Flowers, will serve as an online interactive information hub to provide expert knowledge on good agricultural practices and quality avocado production, from field preparation to harvesting and post-harvest protocols.
He said the platform had activated dedicated Twitter, Facebook, YouTube, and Instagram accounts to share experiences, and tips and respond to existing and potential avocado farmers’ queries.
The plans, he added, are also at an advanced stage to unveil a dedicated Kakuzi Avocademy website that will provide production tips and related audio-visual resources to guide farmers.
The platform will also host an online market to connect avocado production inputs sellers with willing buyers.
“The Kakuzi Avocademy is a deliberate corporate sustainability effort to enhance farmers understanding of the rigorous demands which export markets this is key if they are to create the greatest demand for their products,” Flowers said.
“Through the “Kakuzi Avocademy” e-learning program, we share expert knowledge on agronomy, avocado husbandry, and related Good Agricultural Practices to our farming community.”
Kakuzi is also providing free nursery bed preparation instruction and avocado scions to local nursery operators and community groups in Murang’a, Kirinyaga, Kiambu, Machakos, Kajiado, Nandi, Nyeri, and Laikipia Counties as part of the program.
The horticulture regulator extended the ban on the export of Kenya’s popular avocado varieties to overseas markets to curb the harvesting of immature crop.
Head of Horticultural Crops Directorate (HCD) Benjamin Tito said the ban on Fuerte and Hass varieties will continue indefinitely.
The ban was placed on November 15, 2021, with exceptions given to exporters specialising on the Jumbo variety and those having off-season crop.
“The harvesting of Hass and Fuerte avocado varieties will remain suspended until further notice,” said Mr Tito.
Kenya’s avocado market in the Middle East was hit in 2018 following the export of immature crop to that continent.