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Reasons Why Hass Avocado is Preferred over other Varieties

GROWING HASS AVOCADO IN KENYA:

No matter how much you earn from your salary, if you have an arable land then hass avocado is worth an investment because its less risky and easy to manage. Its advantages comes in handy, as it requires low very low cost input, low maintenance and it has a ready market all over the world.

Normally, under good management and care, a tree of hass avocado will tke less than 2 ½ years to produce the first fruits.  A single mature tree can produce upto 3,000 fruits under good management.

If you plant at a spacing of 5.2 m by 5.2 m an acre will hold 150 avocado trees. This when mature can give you more than 300, 000 fruits. I Kenya under the current market of more than Ksh 12 per fruit, you can easily get Ksh 3.6 Million from an acre.

Although avocados are fairly resistant to drought, well distributed rainfall of between 1000-1200mm is adequate for proper crop development. They also require well drained soils to avoid root rot. The best soils are sandy or alluvial loams with pH ranging from 5 – 7.

ONE ACRE INVESTMENT AND RETURN OF FARMING TREE TOMATO.

PRODUCTION OF HASS AVOCADO IN KENYA

A mature Hass tree produces up to 2000 fruits per year and the current available farm gate market price offered by the biggest Kenyan fruits exporter is Ksh12 per fruit. Therefore a single Hass tree will generate in Ksh 24,000 every year year. And at acreage 3.6 Million every year.
Direct export market chain current offer is $2 (Ksh 200) per kilogram.

Note: The market price is expected to rise because of high demand with limited supply.

 

Why You should shift gears to Hass avocado and Macadamia farming

Reasons Why Hass Avocado is Preferred over other Varieties

  • Hass avocado is the most demanded avocado variety globally, 90% demanded of all avocado varieties.
  • Hass avocado has the longest shelf life among all varieties up to 2-3 weeks from the time of harvesting which makes handling and shipment easy and convenient.
  • Hass has the most oil content of 17% in 100 grams of fruit pulp and of which oil production is highly valued, at local market cost of Kshs 2,000per liter.
  • Hass avocado fruit is 75% creamy yellow and very delicious which makes it to be highly demanded by consumers basically for smoothies, salad and facials due to it’s nutrition values.

NUTRITIONAL FACTS:
250g Hass Avocado
✔368 calories
✔5g protein
✔20g carbohydrates
✔34g fat

For the best packages and certified hass avocado seedlings contact us. We are leading others follow!

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Uhuru to Sign Hass Avocado deal In China Next Month

Uhuru to sign hass avocado deal with China

Avocado farming and especially the hass variety has taken shape in Kenya and our leaders have seen the opportunity and have been in the forefront in ensuring Kenyan farmers access better markets.

In this regard, President Uhuru Kenyatta is expected to travel to China next month for the first Shanghai Import Expo. In  his visit, president Uhuru is expected to sign a deal for exportation of avocados, mangoes and cashew nuts.

On Thursday as he held Cabinet meeting, president Uhuru briefed his cabinet on his intentions. China is one of the recent countries to embrace hass avocado fruits, and being the most populated country, the demand is rising and if President Uhuru can secure a deal, then brighter days for hass avocado farmers are coming.

The President said he will lead a strong delegation of horticultural farmers and traders to China for the first Shanghai Import Expo. A number of trade deals will be negotiated and sealed, he said.

Among the deals the president is expected to seal is the Sanitary and Phytosanitary deal between Kenya and China. This will open doors for the exportation of more than 40 per cent of Kenya’s fresh produce to the expansive Chinese market.

President Uhuru in his statement said the agreement will also include exportation of stevia – a sweetener grown in the Rift Valley.

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Signing Of Hass Avocado and Other fruits Deal

During the Shanghai visit, the Head of State is also expected to sign an MoU for the establishment of a trade negotiation working group. It will be mandated to negotiate trade tariffs especially on Kenya’s tea and coffee exports to China.

On Tuesday 17th October, Uhuru banned Chinese fish, saying it is killing the local market. He spoke at the Strathmore University during the 2018 SMEs conference. “I have been told about the imported fish from China. It is not possible that we import Chinese fish when our local traders are here,” he said.

Uhuru attended the China-Africa Forum for Cooperation (FOCAC) 2018 Summit in August. He held bilateral talks with his Chinese counterpart President Xi Jinping focusing on trade, infrastructure, investments, education and technology. The President witnessed the signing of an Economic and Investment Cooperation Agreement between China and Kenya. Uhuru’s delegation engaged in discussions on financing for Phase 2B of the Standard Gauge Railway from Naivasha to Kisumu.

The discussions also covered the financing for the Western Bypass in Nairobi. The talks also centred on Kenya’s shift from pure debt financing to embrace Private Public Partnerships.

China has remained the biggest lender to Kenyan economy with some quarters saying the loans might plunge the country into a debt trap. (courtesy of Star)

This is the biggest opportunity we have as a nation. Hass avocado farmers have a chance now to get the best prices for their fruits. Last year, Kakuzi Ltd an agricultural company bought hass avocado fruits from farmers at a record high of up to Ksh 35 per fruit. This year we expect the prices to go higher.

Contact us for quality certified seedlings.

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Significance of Hass Avocado Farming in Kenya

Hass avocado has continued to be number one success story in Kenya.

Both local and foreign investors have been putting up avocado factories in the country and have therefore improved prospects among local farmers.

Each year, more than 1500 avocado containers are shipped to Europe and the Middle East. New markets in Asia- specifically Russia and China are opening up opportunities for farmers and exporters, according to key industry players.

This has boosted the country’s profile as a top avocado producer among their other producing nations of Mexico, Chile, Peru and South Africa.

In recent years, the World Economic Forum has recognized Kenya’s avocado success story. Kenya has about 10000ha under the crop with more than 70 per cent of total avocado production coming from smallholder farmers. Increased investment by the county governments has come as a boon to many farmers who previously had to suffer low prices from ravenous brokers-fleecing farmers of their incomes. Contract farming has also encouraged farmers to improve their farming and replace old less productive trees with modern varieties.

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Diversification Through Hass Avocado Farming

Farmers and especially in central Kenya where land has been subdivided many times becoming too small for commercial purposes have been force to diversify their thin king and they have over the recent years adopted hass avocado farming and macadamia farming.

With an acre of land carrying 150 avocado trees, and a single tree producing over 1000 fruits on maturity each retailing at an average of Ksh 10, a farmer is assured of 1.5 million from a single acre.

Production usually starts two and a half years after planting. Hass avocado and Fuerte varieties are the most sought-after. The latter is said to be a good pollinator popular with exporters while the former is more popular in Europe.

Countries that buy avocados from Kenya include United Arab Emirates, the UK, Egypt, The Netherlands, France, Saudi Arabia, Belgium, Spain, Qatar, Bahrain, Kuwait, Germany and Hong Kong.

The government under CS Agriculture Mr Kiunjuri plans to expand to emerging markets such as Malaysia, Singapore and South Korea.

What are you waiting for, we have told you before and we will continue emphasizing that hass avocado farming is the way to go.

Contact us for more details.

 

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What Kenyan Leaders are Saying About Hass Avocado Farming Business in Kenya

hass avocado farming

President Uhuru Kenyatta

President Uhuru Kenyatta while he was opening Nairobi ASK show in October 2018 asked Kenyans to embark on Hass avocado farming. President has noted that avocado market in Europe and other major countries has grown tremendously. Through the minister of Agriculture and Trade, President noted that his government would work closely with farmers and exporters in enhancing people lives through farming.

Former Premier Hon Raila Odinga

Former PM planting Hass Avocado

Orange Democratic Movement (ODM) leader Raila Odinga has urged farmers in Western Kenya to embrace hass avocado farming to improve their income generation levels.
Speaking during the launch of avocado tree planting at Nyamira Girls’ High School and Bar Opuk Primary School in Bondo constituency, Odinga said avocado had been discovered to be the new ‘gold’ in the world. He encouraged the farmers to plant it in large quantities to be able to serve the region as a cash crop. “Hass avocado farming is a cash crop. Avocado is the new gold that has been found in the world… so we want to see this place become more and more green,” said Odinga.
Urging the residents to paint the region green, the National Super Alliance (NASA) principal stated that he wants the people of Western Kenya to plant many avocado trees so that they can organize to put up an avocado processing factory in Kisumu.
Odinga said that if the programme was properly embraced, then the region could produce more avocados that could even be exported to other parts of the world, adding that “we want to have a flight emanating from Kisumu direct to London carrying Nyamira avocado.”
The former premier was flanked by Siaya Governor Cornel Rasanga who stated that, as a county, they support the programme and promised that his government would help in planting as many avocado trees as possible to enhance the region’s tree cover.
Rasanga added that his county government is currently supporting the establishment of tree nurseries in all primary and secondary schools across the region with a view to improve the area’s forest cover.

Governor Mwangi Wai ria- Muranga

Muranga Governor Mwangi Wa Iria

Mwangi Wa Iria Governor Muranga County, has been at the forefront of encouraging people and farmers to plant hass avocado and macadamia. Muranga county government through courtesy of Mwangi Wa Iria has partnered with major hass exporters such as Kakuzi.
Before the governor intervened, hass avocado farmers were being exploited where brokers were buying fruits as low as Ksh 3. However after the governor negotiated the price, a single fruit is now being bought @15 and can go as high as Ksh35.
Before the market was regulated, farmers used to sell a fruit for as low as Sh1. Now they sell one for Sh8. Hass-avocado exporters sell the fruit for as high as KSh 30. Just last year farmers in Murang’a county earned Sh500 million from hass avocado farming according to Governor Mwangi Wa-Iria. Hass avocado investment is bigger than coffee. One properly watered tree of hass avocado can give you 1,000 fruits a year, which comes to Sh8,000.

Governor Kiraitu Murungi- Meru County

Meru Governor Kiraitu distributing seedlings

On Friday 5th October 2018, H.E governor Kiraitu Murungi distributed hybrid Macadamia and Hass Avocado seedlings to farmers in Meru. Although the governor was categorical that he doesn’t encourage farmers to uproot their miraa, he was quick to note that hass avocado and macadamia farming is the future.
In January 2018, Meru County government through the governor took major steps in empowering farmers in the region to embrace diversity and stop depending on traditional cash crops such as tea and coffee. Towards that end, the County’s Department of Agriculture promised to distribute half a million seedlings of avocado in the next two years.
The Hass avocado species has been identified for the project which if successful, should see farmers earn at least ten thousand shillings from each tree every season. As he was speaking at Gitoro ASK showground, the governor asked Trade and Industrialization CS and former Meru governor to help get a good market for farmers. He distributed over 400,000 seedlings.
With the demand for avocados growing in the west, Kenyan farmers are upping production of the coveted crop and reaping the benefits.

Governor Alfred Mutua- Machakos

Machakos Governor, Dr Alfred Mutua

Machakos Governor Alfred Mutua during his benchmarking tour in Nyeri County in 2018 reached at a decision to partner with Nyeri County in a bid of supporting Avocado farmers and increasing the number of trees in the county.
Mutua reached at the decision in his bench-marking tour in Nyeri County when he visited an avocado farm, Mweiga in Kieni . Avocados are in super high demand in the world and if one grows them well, returns can be as high as 250-300 percent. That is good money. I have learned how to grow and ship Avocados to overseas markets.
Mutua said this can fetch good extra income to Machakos residents. “We have decided to partner with Nyeri County to support our Avocado farmers and expand the number of trees grown in our counties. We can then join hands in marketing the fruits locally and overseas so that our households have added income.” Mutua said.
“Our people are hardworking and it is the role of our governments to support and guide them so as to grow wealth. My vision is to identify at least five crops that each household in Machakos can grow so as to generate sufficient income. Once we do that, it will be Bye Bye Mwolyo (Bye to relief food shame),” Mutua added.
Mutua said he is committed to doing this and other ventures such as construction of factories, promoting industrialization and economic enterprises. He said all these will enable residents get extra income.

Governor Mutahi Kahiga- Nyeri

Governor Mutahi Kahiha said that the Hass variety is particularly popular for export. “One tree of the Hass Avocados variety can bear up to 1,000 fruits if well cultivated and cared for. Abroad, one Hass Avocado can fetch up to 5 dollars. If more farmers could take up this type of farming, with the support of the County Government, then more farmers would be empowered. The County Government of Nyeri is committed to cultivating a suitable and conducive environment for farmers where best market practices are practiced.” Mutahi added.
Governor Mutahi this year only has distributed more than 500,000 hass avocado seedlings.

Hass Avocado and Macadamia farming will Improve Lives “ Kiraitu Murungi”

Former Agriculture Cabinet Secretary Willy Bett

Former Agriculture Cabinet Secretary Willy Bett called Kenyan residents to venture into hass avocado farming, saying that the market in France and other European countries was huge.
The CS said the national government would promote farming of avocados by licensing the establishment of seedling nurseries. He explained that there was high demand for avocado produce in France and other European countries and emphasized of the need by the farmers to venture into farming.
Former CS Willy Bett has urged farmers to diversify and seek alternative crops to boost food security in the counties and also to improve their livelihoods.
Mr Bett said maize farmers cannot rely solely on maize and wheat production because of changing economic trends.
He said the country faces maize shortage because many Kenyans depend on it as their staple food adding that farmers should not only concentrate on maize farming.
Speaking at the Kenyenya Green Stadium in Bomachoge Borabu constituency where he launched avocado farming in Kisii County, the CS urged farmers to embrace avocado farming to improve their earnings.
“Farmers need to adjust their farming techniques and venture into other forms of agriculture such as avocado.” “I urge the Kisii people to embrace intensive farming to increase food production for local consumption and export. Kisii is endowed with plenty of rainfall which residents need in planting various crops despite shrinking land sizes,” said Mr Bett.
The CS together with the Kenya Health Inspectorate Service distributed 10, 000 avocado seedling to trained farmers.

Agriculture CS Mwani Kiunjuri

Agriculture CS Mwangi Kiunjuri Distributing Hass avocado Seedlings

Avocado market for Kenya continues to expand as South Africa lifts an 11-year-old ban on Kenya. I urge farmers take advantage of my Ministry’s collaboration with the County Governments in distributing avocado seedlings. However, avocado farmers should ensure that they comply to market standards to avoid attracting another ban.

Conclusion

Do you think all these leaders are bluffing? Many people have been questioning us and in their thinking, they think Hass avocado farming is a pyramid like the quail birds. We at Oxfarm Ag Ltd can assure you our esteemed customers and farmers at large that Hass avocado farming is the future. Avocado is a fruit and with the new eating trends, people are eating healthy and doctors have been recommending avocado as a source of natural fruits.
This short rain, don’t waste time, plant as many tree fruits as you can. More specifically plant hass avocado and Macadamia nuts.

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Hass Avocado and Macadamia farming will Improve Lives “ Kiraitu Murungi”

On Friday 5th October 2018, H.E governor Kiraitu Murungi distributed hybrid Macadamia and Hass Avocado seedlings to farmers in Meru.

Although the governor was categorical that he doesn’t encourage farmers to uproot their miraa, he was quick to note that hass avocado and macadamia farming is the future.

In January 2018, Meru County government through the governor took major steps in empowering farmers in the region to embrace diversity and stop depending on traditional cash crops such as tea and coffee. Towards that end, the County’s Department of Agriculture promised to distribute half a million seedlings of avocado in the next two years.

Top Skills farmers need to be successful in Kenya

The Hass avocado species has been identified for the project which if successful, should see farmers earn at least ten thousand shillings from each tree every season.

As he was speaking at Gitoro ASK showground, the governor asked Trade and Industrialization CS and former Meru governor to help get a good market for farmers. He distributed over 400,000 seedlings.

With the demand for avocados growing in the west, Kenyan farmers are upping production of the coveted crop and reaping the benefits.

Farmers are now switching from coffee and tea to avocados in a bid to profit from the growing European demand. Kenya produces an estimated 115,000 metric tonnes of avocados annually, a figure that is about to increase as farmers embrace news.

Kenya is currently the world’s sixth largest exporter of hass avocado. In recent years, the popularity of hass avocados has increased and is driven by the global awareness of their health benefits.

However, there are concerns by stakeholders that Kenyan farmers should not rush to uproot their coffee trees in order to plant Avocado. This is because it takes about two to three years to start producing fruit, and a further two to reach maturity. However, you can inter-crop and later uproot coffee.

If you are looking for a better way to earn from farming contact us.

 

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Quality hass avocado seedlings and best packages

Quality hass avocado seedlings and best packages

Its yet another rainy season. Farmers all over Kenya are preparing their land for the coming short rain season. The question we are asking is, are you still going to grow maize and beans or have you thought of another better plant to grow? Hass avocado among other tree fruits has been picking up well in both domestic and export market. There a few Kenyans who will discourage others by telling them how avocado will be out of market and how it takes long to mature.

That is not true, avocado and especially hass avocado is always in demand in oversees country, more specifically in the European countries. Hass avocado is generally liked because;

  • It has a longer shelf life compared to the other varieties
  • Matures faster
  • Can produce more than 1000 fruits from a single tree
  • Its sweater and has a lot of fats
  • Has many health benefits

If you put all the above reasons into consideration, then you will realize that hass avocado farming is here to stay. We all know Africa is best in fruit farming because its strategically located at the equator and its warm enough. Not every country can grow avocados, countries in Europe experience very cold seasons and extreme hot seasons making unsuitable for farming.

It’s not just growing avocados, its growing them in the best way possible. Do your research, invest wisely and we assure you, you won’t regret.

Earn more than 10 million per acre with 40k investment.

Inter-cropping Hass Avocado with Vegetables

You can inter-crop hass avocado trees with fast-maturing crops such as legumes, beans and vegetables. The beans fix nitrogen in the soil, thus, making it rich for the avocados besides helping to utilize the farm to the maximum.

We highly discourage inter-cropping with crops that grow into trees because they will have deep-roots which will compete with those of avocados.

For the best seedlings contact us here and we will get back to you. Our seedbeds are located in Nyeri and Embu and we also have a demo farm coming soon in Nairobi (ridge-ways).

Check out our services and packages here.

 

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Frequently Asked questions about Hass Avocado Farming in Kenya

Hass Avocado

Hass Avocado farming in Kenya is a topic that we all know it’s not going to end soon. Farmers and interested farmers have been asking us questions about hass avocado farming and the way to go about it. Well we are your eyes and ears, we will always give you information that will guide you in making those decisions that are difficult to make when it comes to farming. We are your partner when it comes to fruit farming and more specifically hass avocado farming. Here are some of your questions that we have tried to answer;

1.    Where do I get Hass Avocado Seedlings?

This is a question that is so common in Kenya. Over the past years, different companies as well as individuals have invested heavily in the business of selling seedlings. The main reason is because hass avocado fruit demand is rising day by day, hence the demand for seedlings. However, how can a farmer know whether the seedling is of hass variety and not fuerte or any other variety? Well I will tell you frankly that it is not simple, that’s why I would encourage farmers not to buy seedlings by the road side but rather consult and buy from certified groups. If you want genuine Hass Avocado seedlings buy here.

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2.    Where do I get Market for my Hass Avocado Fruits?

I will tell you in surety that, hass avocado market is overwhelming. If you interact with exporters such as Kakuzi you will learn that Kenyan hass avocado is loved and we can never satisfy the market even if we all planted avocado. Avocado is a fruit (healthy indeed) and as you might have learnt, due to many lifestyle diseases, people are urged to eat healthy. Our bodies requires fats but cholesterol free. Avocado fruit contain both vitamins and fats that are essential and healthy and are cholesterol free.

It is for the above reasons that you should not worry about market. Market will always be there, so get out there and plant an avocado today.

3.    Who are the main buyers of hass from farmers?

In this field, we have different players who buy directly from farmers. There are companies that buy avocado to process beauty products as well as oil. Others export the fruits just the way it is harvested from the farm. Therefore, there are as many buyers and exporters but just to mention a few, the biggest buyers are Kakuzi, Selina Wamucii, Olivado, Sasini, Mt Kenya Fresh Avocados e.t.c. What matters is quantity and quality, how many tonnes of hass can they get from you? How well have you taken care of them?

4.    What Do Exporters Expect From Hass Avocado Farmers?

Farmers must get it right when it comes to export. If you are planning on going commercial about hass avocado, you must get the right variety of seedlings and the requires fruit sizes. Export market requires quality produce. Export market demands for fruits of certain shapes and sizes. Buyers at the export market prefer size 12 fruits with dry matter content of 25%. In additional farmers should wait for the right time to pick the fruits and should never pick them before they are mature.

5.    Is My Area Suitable for Hass Avocado Farming?

Kenya is one of the few countries that enjoys equatorial climate. Most counties in Kenya receive a minimum of two rainy season. Avocados are highly adapted to different rainfall conditions; however, the rain should be an average of 1,000–1,600mm per annum and well-distributed throughout the year. Counties in central Kenya, Eastern, Central rift valley, Lower Nyanza and all western Kenya counties have the best climatic conditions for hass-Avocado cultivation. In Eastern Kenya, avocados do well in certain pockets such as Kang’undo, Mua Hills, Kathiani (Iveti hills), parts of Mbooni, all in Machakos County, and the high potential areas of the larger Embu and Meru counties. Other areas include; Kisii, Nyamira, Kakamega, Bungoma, Transzoia, Nakuru, Uasingishu, Narok Bomet and some parts of Laikipia.

6.    Can I inter-crop Hass Avocados with other Crops?

As inter-cropping provides extra income, farmers can choose to have any kind of vegetable or pulse crops in the inter space. These crops may fix the nitrogen and suppress the weeds and increase the soil fertility. Only precaution should be taken care to grow the crops little far from an avocado plant. Therefore, Avocado orchards may be inter-cropped with other crops such as beans, peas, kale, or cabbage during the first 3-5 years to get economic returns from the land before the trees start bearing or produce economic returns.

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7.    How do I control pests and diseases in my avocado farm?

Biological pest control is by far the better option for avocado pests, as the incorrect use of agrochemicals on avocado trees could see minor pests develop into major economic risks. It is good to note that avocado orchards enjoy natural enemies (predators and parasites) that are able to maintain a biological balance. Cultural control is also effective depending on the level of infestation. When both the cultural and the biological control system are not working, selective use of chemical insecticides to control pests and diseases is necessary. This approach is referred to as IPM.

When you see diseases on the tree the damage is done. Early detection is a great plus. Anthracnose & collectrotrichum-On hass the symptoms will be seen as a bronzing, similar to mite damage on other crops, but has a small lesion and is described as “pepper spot”. These diseases are most likely to occur during the wet conditions. When the fruit is small, i.e. smaller than pegion egg size, it is not susceptible. Fruits bigger than this size is susceptible to infection at any time under favorable climatic conditions for the fungus.

8.    Should I Plant Two Different Varieties Of Avocados E.G Hass And Fuerte?

The type of avocado cultivars planted in an orchard will contribute to the expected yield. There are two types of avocado that flower at different times of the year (type A and type B). Mix both types in an orchard so that type A pollinates type B and vice visa. Hence cross pollination leads to higher yields than self-pollination. The presence of bee hives within the orchard is recommended as bees are the main pollinators of avocado. One should avoid applying chemicals that are harmful to bees.

9.    How Can I Avoid Flowers Abortion From My Hass Avocado Tree?

Avocado trees naturally experience a fairly large degree of fruit drop and there’s nothing you can or should do about this. Often, less than 1 percent of the avocado tree’s flowers will end up growing into mature fruit. Excellent cultural care practices during the flowering and fruiting stages helps to maintain an acceptable level of fruit drop.

 

 

 

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Hass Avocado Farming In Kenya From seedling to Export

hass avocado farming in Kenya

Hass avocado farming in Kenya offers a good opportunity for youth and farmers to venture into. The market, both local and export is growing day by day but its limited by the production capacity.

Demand projections for the consumption of Kenyan grown Hass avocado fruits locally and internationally is increasing due to its inherent characteristics and adherence to Organic production. This agri-enterprise is ideal for Kenyan farmers and buyers finds them at their growing regions. The cost of production is low as it requires less labour,it is a perennial crop, resistant to diseases and pest which gives Kenyan farmers comparative advantage and well placed for organically grown Hass avocado.

Most growers of avocado are found in former central region, Kisii, and parts of western. However, north rift regions are becoming a force in the latest trends, bearing in mind they possess large tracks of land. In the recent developments, Kenya has witnessed increase in the number of countries interested in Kenyan fruits, some of these countries include, Russia, Netherlands, Italy, Spain, France, Germany and many more. Leading exporters include Kakuzi Ltd, Selina Wamucii, Mt. Kenya Avacado Farms.

National government through agencies such as KEPHIS, HCDA and the like have been on the fore front in improving hass avocado farming in Kenya. Local governments on the other hand have also played a great role in enhancing hass avocado farming in Kenya, for example, Mwangi Wa Iria, Muranga County governor has been providing farmers with hass avocado seedlings and marketing their produce to various exporters ensuring they get value for their produce.

Today in Kenya more and more farmers are compelled to start growing improved avocado trees, which will triple the countries production rates for exportation. The big season for avocado has begun with an expected high rise in volumes of exported avocados.

Ecological Requirements for Hass Avocado Farming In Kenya

Hass avocado farming in Kenya does well in higher altitudes of between 1000m to 2000m. Howevor, the fruit is somehow bigger in cooler areas as compared to warm areas. It requires an optimum temperature of 20-24 degrees celcius. Avocado, grows in deep soils that are well drained to avoid root rot. Although avocados are fairly resistant to drought, thy require well distributed rainfall of between 1000-1200mm for proper crop development. The best soils are sandy or alluvial loam with a PH ranging from 5-7.

Planting Hass Avocado

Hass avocado farming in kenya is is grown from seeds, however, to ensure you have the right hass cultivar, grafting is done which increases resistance to diseases, improves yield and increases its adaptability to different soils. Growers found that grafting small stems onto the seedling of another type of avocado produces a tree that matures faster and bears far more fruit than one grown from a Hass seed.

Planting material must be inspected by qualified personnel to ensure they are free from diseases. In case of newly cleared land, it is advisable to plant an annual crop a year before growing avocados, in order to achieve a good tillage of the cleared land. If there are strong winds, ensure the necessary wind-breakers such as hedges are in place.

It is advisable to plant the trees in straight lines to facilitate crop husbandry and harvesting. In Kenya, the rectangular pattern of planting is preferred for hass avocados, as it eases movement of machinery in between rows as well as other activities such as inspection, thinning, and pruning. Tree spacing depends on several factors such as soil fertility and climatic conditions. Spacing may range from, 5m by 5m, 6m by 7m to 8m by 10m.

The planting holes should be 2 feet by 2 feet. Use about one bucket of farmyard manure properly mixed with top soil. Planting should be done after the onset of rains when rainwater has properly penetrated the soil. When filling up the holes, do not damage the roots. Irrigate the newly planted Hass avocado trees or seeds preferably until the first shoots appear. Tie the young plants to sticks to support them.

Pruning hass avocados

Pruning starts at the planting stage where roots that are too long and do not fit in the planting hole are reduced in size. During the early stages of growth, trees are trained in order to maintain a good framework. Pruning is also normally done before flowering and upon completion of harvesting. The general guideline is that the tree canopy height should be 70% of row width. This allows light to penetrate. Pruning improves yield and provides a superior tree structure.

Thinning is also done by removing some of the already formed fruits in order reduce competition for nutrients, therefore ensuring high-quality fruits. Too many fruits will result to small sized fruits. Ensure weed is controlled to reduce competition for nutrients and water. Some of the methods for weed control are mechanical cultivation, cover cropping, and mulching.

Pests and Diseases that affect hass Avocado farming in Kenya

The most efficient and economical method of pest and disease control is prevention. These preventive measures include weed control, proper selection of planting material, maintaining optimum plant density and proper fertilizer application.

Hass avocado farming in Kenya is not considerably affected by pests and rarely will pest control require a chemical application. However, some of the major pests attacking avocados include, False codling moth which is a brownish, night-flying moth, thrips, and Scale insects

Fungal diseases may also affect avocados and therefore need to be checked. They include;

  • Root rot – Also known as Phytophthora cinnamomi, it is mostly found in areas with poorly drained soils and flood prone areas. Some of the preventive measures include fungal and hot water treatment of seeds and grafting on phytophthora resistant rootstock. There are two chemicals registered to combat this disease i.e. Ridomil, active ingredient Metalaxyl, is a granular formulation which is applied in the soil, and works by killing the pathogen. Aliette, the second chemical is applied onto the leaves.
  • It’s also called Colletotrichum gloeosporioides. It attacks the fruits, forming dry, dark brown sports. It mostly attacks mature fruits. It is controlled using copper based fungicides as well as spraying with chemicals such as Benomyl, Mancozeb, Metiram, Propineb, Thiabendazole or Triforine.
  • Cercospora fruit spot or Pseudocercospora purpurea also affects the fruits leaving small, light yellow spots which eventually turn to a brownish color on leaves and fruits. It’s controlled using similar methods to Anthracnose.
  • It attacks fruits, twigs, and leaves. Lesions emerge as little dark spots a little raised and are oval or elongated. It’s controlled using similar methods to Anthracnose.

Why Kakuzi Ltd is abandoning Pineaple and venturing into hass avocado farming

Harvesting of hass avocados

Kenya Hass Avocados flowers at around October and are mature for picking between June to September. It is important to know how to identify the correct harvesting period because avocados are harvested raw and ripen off the tree. Harvest a few fruits and keep them in favourable conditions to ripen. If the fruits ripen evenly, they can be considered to have been mature. Careful picking of similar fruits from the trees can now commence.

Avocado is harvested between April and September in Kenya. Since most varieties do not change colour on maturity, a few fruits should be picked and stored at room temperature for 7-10 days. If they soften without shrivelling, then the fruit is ready for harvesting. Fruit should not be pulled from the stalk but be cut off leaving a 3-cm stalk.

Postharvest: The following treatment, processing and packaging methods should be used to prolong shelf life:

Pre-cooling -After harvesting, avocadoes must be cooled as quickly as possible to the optimum storage temperature of 5oC for Fuerte and Hass varieties; within 5 h of harvesting.

Hot Water Treatment -This treatment is used to kill fungal spores on and in the skin of the fruit. The avocadoes should be immersed in water heated to a temperature of 50°C for 3-5 min. Treatment of fruit using fungicides such as Bavistin (Carbendazim) and Sporta K Brochlura z improves the effectiveness of this treatment.

Grading And Packaging– Avocado fruits are graded according to size and weight. Injured and diseased fruits should be removed. The fruits are packed as per the orders and quality standards in 4 kg cartons after all debris, soil and foreign particles are removed using a water bath. This water must be changed periodically to avoid cross contamination. A fungicidial treatment (Thiabendazole) at 300 ml per 100 L of water is used. The fruits are waxed, and dried in hot air. Avocado fruits are stored in cold storage (5°C).

Kenya Becomes an Avocado Powerhouse in Africa Overtaking South Africa

Market – The most important factors ensuring successful marketing are quality, packaging, rapid adaptation of exports to seasonal fluctuations and changing market situations (supply and demand), an intact logistical chain (including proper cooling along the marketing chain and competitive prices).

Investors who plan on venturing in the hass export business must clearly target the specifit market segment if they want to reap the full benefits of avocado-production. The export market doesn’t start with buying the seedlings for planting. Fresh products export needs a long term plan of venturing into one of the most stringent markets ever, more so for those targeting the EU food market, which is strictest in the world.

 

Hass Avocado Seedlings

 

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Kenya Becomes an Avocado Powerhouse in Africa Overtaking South Africa

Avocado sales to China are expected to be more than double this year as demand continues to grow for the fruit from the country’s expanding middle-class population. It appears to just double every year. And, the pace of growth shows no sign of slowing as more health-conscious consumers in the world’s most populous nation show an interest in the “heart-healthy” avocados, executives say. The fruit also appeals to “young, trendy people,” said Barnard.

One big beneficiary of the growing demand is Kenya, the greatest avocado producer in Africa. The Chinese market has been growing at a very fast pace. Avocado has evolved into a trending ingredient worldwide and has particular resonance in China and Russia— where it’s commonly known as butter fruit — due to its somewhat exotic positioning.

Reasons Why You Should Start an Agribusiness in Kenya Today

Most of the demand in China is from urban consumers in the largest cities of Shanghai, Beijing and Guangzhou. Chinese millennials who have traveled overseas also are helping to grow the market. Demand for avocados also is strong in Japan and other parts of Europe such as Netherlands.

Russia and Italy are key destinations of the green skins in Europe. Italy is yet to make a mark in the Kenya avocado scene as Russia has done. This is why the bulk of local Fuerte goes to Asian destinations.

Italy and Russia are among the key buyers of Avocado in Europe. However, Italy is yet to position itself in the Kenya avocado scene compared to Russia. This is more of a reason why most of our fuerte goes to Asian countries.

According to Selina Wamucii, a company that sources fresh produce from farmers, Kenya Avocados’ impressive volumetric growth rate per year and access to new markets has helped the country to overtake South Africa as the number one exporter of avocados from Africa.  According to Trade statistics from International Trade Centre (ITC), the East African country became the 11th largest exporter avocados in the world in 2017, exporting a record volume of 51, 507 tons to the world. South Africa, traditionally the lead exporter of avocados from the continent, relinquished the position and trailed Kenya for the first time in five years with 43, 492 tons.

Why Kakuzi Ltd is abandoning Pineaple and venturing into hass avocado farming

Statistically, as the top performer in the Africa avocado exporting industry, Kenya holds 1.3% of the total world volume. South Africa follows by 1.1 percent, a depreciation from the 2016 peak of 1.6% when it was Africa’s export champion. Even though these two countries’ figures are a far cry from the 48.4 percent market share of Mexico, they are nonetheless impressive for each country. While Kenya boasts new markets like the Russian Federation and South-east Asia, South Africa has over 90% of its exports going to European Union countries, (ITC 2018).

Why farmers should plant more Avocado

There is no other perfect time to invest in avocado like this time. Kenya has not only attracted avocado export to South Africa, but has also overtaken S.A in terms of export to become number one in the continent.

We are in a very strong position to sustain avocado export dominance in Africa. With players such as Oxfarm, Kakuzi Ltd, Selina Wamucii and the likes who source avocado from farmers,  will surprise the world. The Kenya’s small-scale farmers are the backbone of this country and with right information and management, our future is secure.

 

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Why Kakuzi Ltd is abandoning Pineaple and venturing into hass avocado farming

Kakuzi ltd which is listed in Nairobi exchange and deals in farming is planning an exit on pineapple farming. After growing pineapples for over two decades now, it is signaling a shift in its products. Kakuzi Ltd is increasing acreage under avocados whose demand has skyrocketed globally.

Read: Basic Characteristics of an agri-preneur

Avocados Has Better Profits

Kakuzi Ltd while announcing that decision in March 2018, they also announce a 5.2% increase in net profit to Sh561.6 million for the year ended December 2017. The profit increase according to the company is attributed to the higher international avocado and macadamia prices.

Although the company which owns more than 25,000 acres of land has been growing tea, forestry, livestock , pineapples and other fruits, it has now decided to focus its efforts on growing hass avocado whose returns per-acre are much higher than that of pineapples.

In a statement produced by Kakuzi, the decision was reached to discontinue with fresh pineapple operation in favor of planting pinkerton, hass and fuerte avocado varieties.

The  major pineapple producers in Kenya include Kakuzi, Del Monte’s in Thika and Ndemo farm in Kilgoris. For the years now, Kakuzi has become synonymous with the crop.

While some of its harvest is exported to countries such as France, Germany, Italy, Belgium and the Netherlands – mostly in canned form – Kakuzi has always sold its produce in the local market. The fruit is also used to make concentrate for juice products.

Read: How to make Silage for your Dairy Cows in Kenya

Hass Avocados and Macadmia Nuts

Over the past several years, macadamia and avocado have become choice crops for agricultural firma in Kenya with Kakuzi, Sasini and other major players reaping heavily.

In 2017, according to their statement, the company closed with 1,500 acres of land under avocado from which it harvested 7,282 tonnes of fruit. At its peak, Kakuzi had over 120 acres of its own land under pineapple and another 1,100 acres under a joint venture with juice maker Del Monte.

However, in 2017, the company closed with just 60 acres of its land under pineapple and the partnership between Delmonte is set to be terminated in future years.

According to Kakuzi, the increase in profit is as a result of continued market demand for avocado and macadamia throughout the year. The company also attributed profitability within the Tea operations has continued to reflect the difficult trading conditions and significant inflationary pressure on labor and other production costs.

Read: Why You should shift gears to Hass avocado and Macadamia farming

Now you know why we have continually advised you to plant hass avocados and macadamia. If the big boys are shifting, why do you sit there claiming that there is no market, or it will flood.