Pendleton, OR - The Oregon Wheat Growers League is deeply appreciative of the efforts put forth from USDA resulting in expanded opportunities for Oregon wheat for export markets into Kenya. After twelve years of discussion and a U.S. technical visit, Kenya has adopted a phytosanitary protocol and lifted its prohibition on wheat exports from Oregon, Washington and Idaho. Effective immediately, U.S. wheat may now be shipped to Kenya regardless of state of origin or port of export.
“The acceptance of export phytosanitary inspection and certification provides access to a market restricted to Oregon growers for more than a decade.” stated Amanda Hoey, Oregon Wheat CEO.Kenya imports much of its annual wheat supply, since its domestic production only supports around 10% of annual consumption needs. This change has a significant impact for Oregon Wheat market potential in Kenya, but also for U.S. wheat going into Uganda as they are using Kenya's port facilities and thus have been restricted to those same import requirements. As part of the technical agreement, Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service (APHIS) will work with U.S. stakeholders to enhance general surveillance for flag smut of wheat (Urocystis agropyri) in Idaho, Oregon and Washington.
Oregon Wheat supports the proactive free trade negotiations with Kenya to provide an increased U.S. wheat supply. We are hopeful this agreement encourages other countries to follow and allow the U.S. to provide high quality wheat.