Saudi Arabia issues new rules for Kenyan meat

Saudi Arabia government has issued new requirements for Kenya’s meat exports.

In a notice, Saudi Arabia, Kenya’s main meat market, said any meat to be exported to its country should be refrigerated and packed according to new requirements.

“Notice is hereby issued that in order to comply with the requirements of technical regulations of the Saudi Food and Drug Authority (SFDA) No. (SFDA.FD 996:20) related to chilled and frozen livestock meat, the SFDA require all exporters of refrigerated slaughtered animals and their unpacked parts to the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia to comply with the said regulations,” read part of the statement by Saudia government.

The government in its new export requirements stated that chilled and frozen livestock meat should be properly wrapped in suitable packaging material to facilitate the release of consignment of unpacked slaughtered animals and its unpacked cuts from Kenya to the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia.

Saudi Arabia government noted that any package which does not comply with the new rules would not be accepted in its market.

“This is therefore to notify the relevant stakeholders to adhere to the above regulations as appropriate,” read the statement.

This year Kenya appointed two UAE companies – Global Foods and Blue Mountain – to market Kenyan meat products in the Middle East with Dubai as the distribution point.

Kenya is also planning to set up distribution centres and cold storage warehouses in Kuwait, Qatar, Saudi Arabia, the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC), Sudan, and Egypt.

“We want to directly take charge of the export market by doing away with middlemen in our supply chain system. This will also help us convert agent commission fees into income,” said Patrick Mutemi, the deputy managing commissioner and head of finance and marketing at the Kenya Meat Commission in an earlier interview.

The Middle East is a prime market for small stock products such as lamb, mutton, and goat meat while corned beef is more popular in the African market and Saudi Arabia.

Kenya Trade Network Agency (KenTrade), a state agency mandated to facilitate cross-border trade, has also implemented the National Electronic Single Window System (Kenya TradeNet System) which only accepts exports of meat of suppliers which have met required guidelines.

“For a supplier to qualify to export processed meat products such as prime cuts, bacon and sausages, they should have export health certificate from veterinary services under the Ministry of Livestock,” said Kentrade in a notice to exporters.

Every meat shipment must also be accompanied by a health certificate from Veterinary Services and a Certificate of Origin from the Kenya Revenue Authority, Customs Department or Kenya Chamber of Commerce and Industry depending on the country of destination.

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