Kenya: Rose exports at risk due to papaya bug

Kenya Plant Health Inspectorate Service (Kephis) said the mealybug, which has so far devastated papaya in the coastal region, poses a serious threat to roses and vegetables.

Kephis managing director Esther Kimani called for quick intervention to tame the spread, warning that failure to do so could inflict heavy losses on the horticulture sector.

“Papaya mealybug is now becoming as serious threat that can affect our vegetables and roses if we do not contain it on time,” said Dr Kimani.

The bug, according to the agency, can cause losses of up to 70 percent when it attacks a crop.

In October, Australia tightened its rules on exports of Kenyan roses saying that they could only accept the flowers if they comply with the zero-pest rule.

Previously, the country would fumigate the flowers at the port of entry before the new rule took effect in October.

Read more at Business Daily (Gerald Andae)

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