East African carrier, Kenya Airways is set to start airlifting fresh produce from Kisumu International Airport to the outside world after a successful test run of the shipment on Tuesday.
According to capitalfm.co.ke, the Airways head of quality control, Valentine Muruli says the airline is ready for the inaugural flight which starts on January 8 2022 and will operate twice a week.
“Just assure everyone in Kenya that the airline is committed and ready to open up Kisumu for cargo,” since that pandemic started, we were left with capacity which we had to quickly think and be innovative and make sure that we are able to fly those aircrafts carrying cargo instead of passengers,” he said.
Speaking at the cold storage facility next to the airport, he further said that KQ will work closely with other government agencies to ensure what is being exported meets all the requirements.
The test run was attended by officials from the Kenya Revenue Authority, Ministry of Health and Kenya Plant Health Inspectorate Services (KEPHIS) amongst others.
Chairman of Kisumu Lakefront Development Corporation (KLDC) Edward Ouko, who was also in attendance assured that the region, especially farmers, are ready to start the export.
“We are all here as the whole institutions of government to ensure that on the 8th, anything that will leave here will be quality assured,” he said.
Ouko said whatever will be exported from Kisumu will find a ready market and appealed to farmers to continue planting fresh produce and opt for the airport instead of taking their produce to Nairobi for onward shipment to the outside world.
Joseph Ayieko, head of KEPHIS in Kisumu County, on his part, assured of the agency’s readiness noting that it will ensure what is being exported meets the required standards.