By Gerald Andae
Kenya has lifted the ban on poultry products from Uganda following recent bilateral talks between the two heads of state that will also see the country resume beef exports to Kampala.
Livestock PS Harry Kimutai says Ugandan firms are now free to bring in products after Kenya recently received official communication from Kampala highlighting measures put in place to control the viral influenza disease that led to the ban.
Mr Kimutai also said beef exports to Uganda have resumed after Uganda lifted the decade-long ban.
“I can confirm that it is now official that Ugandan poultry products can be exported to Kenya without restrictions that have been in place for nearly two years,” said Mr Kimutai.
“The move follows bilateral talks between the two governments in March, which also saw Kenya’s beef allowed access to the Ugandan market.”
Kenya had in August 2017 allowed only three firms from Uganda to export chicken products after they met the conditions set to eliminate and curb the spread of the virus.
Uganda’s Ministry of Agriculture, Animal Industry and Fisheries confirmed the first outbreak of highly pathogenic avian influenza in January 2017.
This led to Kenya banning importation of poultry products from Uganda to prevent the spread of the disease.
Speaking during the launch of the Dairy Industry Awards Scheme organised by Kenya Dairy Board (KDB) and the Eastern and Southern Africa Dairy association, the PS said the move would boost the regional economy.
The national awards will be the first aimed at sustaining growth in the dairy industry.
“Overall goal of these awards is to enhance adoption of good practices in the industry and increase earnings to players along the dairy value chain,” said KDB managing director Margret Kibogy.
Mr Kimutai said the ministry is implementing Kenya Livestock Insurance Cover in Marsabit, Isiolo, Mandera, Samburu, Tana River, Turkana and Wajir with the aim of making dairy farming a commercial venture in Arid and Semi-Arid Lands.