JULY 2018
In 2017, Kenya’s macadamia nut industry grew by 19 percent. The value of Kenya’s export of macadamia nuts to the U.S. grew by 39 percent. The USAID Hub’s Specialty Food Advisor thinks Kenya will replicate or exceed this growth in 2018. He’s been introducing Kenya macadamia sellers to U.S. buyers through trade shows and buyers missions. His effort combined with Kenya’s commitment to improved quality production is yielding results.
IN THIS ISSUE:
  • KENYA MACADAMIA NUT EXPORTS ARE ON THE RISE. THE U.S. IS BUYING.
  • FORGING NEW STRATEGIES FOR U.S.-AFRICA TRADE AND INVESTMENT AT 17TH ANNUAL AGOA FORUM
  • USAID HUB PROMOTES U.S. TECHNOLOGIES TO STRENGTHEN EAST AFRICAN SUPPLY CHAINS
  • RWANDA AND TANZANIA WOMEN TRADERS SET TO GAIN FROM NEW USAID SUPPORTED GRANT
  • YOUNG INNOVATORS GAIN FROM USAID-SUPPORTED BUSINESS DEVELOPMENT PROGRAM
KENYA MACADAMIA NUT EXPORTS ARE ON THE RISE. THE U.S. IS BUYING.
The value of Kenya’s macadamia nut exports to the U.S. has been on a steady rise since 2000, the year the African Growth and Opportunity Act (AGOA) came into effect. AGOA is a trade program that helps establish stronger commercial ties between the U.S. and eligible sub-Saharan Africa countries by reducing tariffs on select goods. Macadamia nuts is one of 6,500 products that qualify for duty-free access to the U.S. under AGOA. 

Macadamia nuts are also a “specialty food,” which the USAID Hub defines as high-value, low-volume product that combines some of the following qualities; uniqueness, origin, health or restorative properties, processing method, design, limited supply, unusual application or use, extraordinary packaging, or channel of distribution/sale. The Hub focuses its technical assistance and market linkage support on specialty foods because of U.S. demand and because specialty foods tend to offer higher margins to sellers.

If East African specialty food sellers can show good manufacturing practices, a robust value chain, a unique product and strong customer service, the U.S. market offers high-sales opportunities – and both buyers and sellers gain.
The specialty foods market in the U.S. reached $80 billion in total sales last year (2017) and is growing at three or four times the rate of standard grocery store product (6-8% annually for the past ten years).

Why source macadamia nuts from Kenya? Watch our video by clicking here or above.

In mid-July, the Hub supported nine companies from Kenya and East Africa to exhibit at the International Food Technologists Expo  in Chicago, U.S.A. Links made will drive even more trade in specialty foods between East Africa and the U.S., including macadamia nuts.
FORGING NEW STRATEGIES FOR U.S.-AFRICA TRADE AND INVESTMENT AT 17TH ANNUAL AGOA FORUM
The USAID Hub gained recognition for its work to enhance trade between the U.S. and sub-Saharan Africa at the recent United States Sub-Saharan Africa Trade and Economic Cooperation Forum (AGOA Forum) in Washington DC, USA from July 9 - 12. 

“USAID’s regional trade hubs are breaking down barriers for commerce every day, ” said Deputy Secretary of Commerce John J. Sullivan.

He cited the Hub's recent closure of a $15 million deal in Tanzania that registers, imports, and distributes health products. The company directly sources its products from Medtronics, a U.S. -listed company valued at over $8 billion. The company will utilize the funds raised to expand its medical devices business across both East and West Africa. To date, the Hub has facilitated more than $125 million in investment deals and more than $350 million in exports through AGOA.

The Hub's trade and investment work has benefited both U.S. and African companies and contributed to economic opportunity and job creation on both sides of the Atlantic.

Read more about the Forum here .
Photo credit: DipNote U.S. Department of State Official Blog .

Deputy Secretary of Commerce John J. Sullivan (above) opened the AGOA Forum stating that, “It is clear that AGOA has produced results. Over the last year, total U.S. trade with Africa climbed up to $38.5 billion; that’s up from 33 billion in 2016. And the total non-oil goods trade has more than doubled from 13 billion to almost 30 billion a year."

Interested in finding out more about the current status of trade between the U.S. and sub-Saharan Africa and changes in country eligibility for AGOA benefits? Check out the United States Trade Representative   2018 Biennial Report on The Implementation Of The African Growth And Opportunity Act .
USAID HUB PROMOTES U.S. TECHNOLOGIES TO STRENGTHEN EAST AFRICAN SUPPLY CHAINS
Temperature loggers, ammonia chillers, and completely fitted storage rooms -- on or off grid -- are just a few of the U.S. technologies that 17 Hub-supported East African agribusinesses discovered in Chicago at the Global Cold Chain Expo and Conference 2018. These technologies increase the efficiency of agricultural markets and can improve food security. U.S. businesses have them; East African companies need them. The USAID Hub is linking the two for a trade win-win.

The East African cold chain industry has struggled to adopt efficient solutions and utilize innovations in logistics, storage, postharvest handling, and other related practices. Introduction and adoption of cold chain technologies in East Africa will contribute to improved food safety and quality standards, as well as increased tradable quantities, thereby enhancing regional trade and contributing to regional food security and resiliency.
East African buyers had varying levels of experience in technology sourcing. They ranged from a Kenyan company run by a couple that employs over 6,000 agribusiness technology innovators to companies looking to begin sourcing advance cold chain technology from the U.S. Thanks to the trip, buyers were able to meet with top cold chain technology sellers and see the newest technologies in the market firsthand, giving them insight into the innovative and efficient food security-enhancing production process. With this knowledge, East African buyers are better equipped to expand their sourcing of U.S. cold chain technologies.
RWANDA AND TANZANIA WOMEN TRADERS SET TO GAIN FROM NEW USAID-SUPPORTED GRANT
The USAID Hub and partners link cross-border traders to financial institutions and markets and build their capacity in enterprise management and structured marketing systems. The Hub and partners have also been instrumental in helping cross-border traders to form the East Africa Cross Border Traders Association, through which they can advocate for trade-conducive policies and disseminate trade information quickly to the people who need it.

This year, through a grant to Agribusiness Focused Partnership Organization (AGRIFOP), the Hub is expanding its reach to Rwanda-Tanzania women cross-border traders who specialize in grain, fruits and vegetables. 

These women traders will have an opportunity to improve their business competitiveness and incomes by participating in training that prepares them to enter the formal market. Sessions include: cross-border trade requirements, procedures, documentation and regulations, grain quality standards and warehouse management. Read more about the program here .
In East Africa, cross-border trade is characterized by inefficiencies, high transaction costs and low competitiveness. Studies have shown that cross-border traders lack business management skills and knowledge on the requirements to trade across borders. Traders also confront high storage costs and handling loses through spillage, pest damage and contamination, which lower the quality and quantity of grains and diminish profits. 

Informal cross-border trade is estimated to account for up to 60 percent of all intra-regional trade in the EAC and women are estimated to compose 80 percent of all informal traders. Empowering women to use formal trade channels helps them to take advantage of cross-border trade facilities and leaves them less vulnerable to actors that prey upon the disenfranchised.
YOUNG INNOVATORS GAIN FROM USAID-SUPPORTED BUSINESS DEVELOPMENT PROGRAM
On July 11, the Hub and partner Intellecap celebrated the completion of a business development program for 10 young innovators from East Africa. The Hub chose the ten innovators to participate following their strong performance in the East Africa Postharvest Technology Competition 2017 ( EAPTC 2017) , which the Hub partnered with Inter Region Economic Network (IREN) to conduct.

The business development program focused on mentorship and best practices in building financial models, capital raising, developing and presenting business plans and intellectual property rights.

Participants are now well equipped with industry knowledge and skills to help them adapt to evolving business trends and grow their businesses.
The Hub joined Intellecap representatives and USAID Mission representatives to celebrate the innovators at a small ceremony in Kampala

“Following this program I have learnt how to pitch my business to potential partners and have since secured a partnership with the government of Zanzibar to use my solar dryers to dry various agricultural commodities,” said John Kirigiti, business development program participant and 2 nd  runner up in EAPTC 2017.
WHERE WE WORK:
The East African Community countries - Burundi, Kenya, Rwanda, Tanzania and Uganda - and, Ethiopia, Madagascar, and Mauritius.

East Africa Trade and Investment Hub |  info@eatradehub.org  |  www.eatradehub.org