RUSH in Uganda shares insights on process data to improve sanitary and phytosanitary function for horticultural exports

On 28 April 2023 Swisscontact and the Global Alliance for Trade Facilitation (GATF) held the Re-engineering of Uganda's Sanitary and Phytosanitary Inspection of Horticulture Exports (RUSH) Project team held a half-day workshop with over 30 exporters and public sector officials.

These represented various FF&V (Fresh Fruit and Vegetable) export packers and government agencies that are project participants in the RUSH project. The primary objective of the workshop was to share with these stakeholders key insights from the data collected and analysed over a six-month period (May 2022 - October 2022). The analysis aimed at understanding key issues such as product wastage, time spent on SPS (Sanitary and Phytosanitary) inspection procedures, extent of local interception of FF&V exports due to detection of harmful organisms including pests and diseases, etc. The project aimed to help stakeholders understand how this waste translates into time and monetary losses, especially for farmers and exporters. These datasets were an integral part of the project's quick wins interventions to improve the manual SPS inspection process prior to its digitisation.

In summary, the analysis estimated a loss of nearly US$ 300,000 (1,085,577,890 Ugandan shillings) per year to both farmers and exporters. This equates to almost US$10,000 per exporter per year (this is the total estimated loss of revenue due to wastage, rejection and MRL testing). Exporters lose an estimated US$ 134,310 per year in potential revenue due to wastage and rejection at the packing station.

This equates to an estimated annual loss of US$4,477 per exporter per year. Farmers lose an estimated US$ 72,054 (279,569,520 Ugandan shillings) per year due to wastage and rejection at the packing station. These are potential losses to farmers for products that are not exported. 39% of export consignments during the intervention period had to pay for Maximum Residue Levels (MRLs) testing at the destination market - mainly the European Union (EU). This represents an annual loss of US$70,000 due to chemical testing requirements.



This knowledge product also sheds light on how to improve the efficiency of the SPS process and limit waste and rejects. Key recommendations include adopting a systems approach to managing the SPS process, deepening digitalisation, improving sorting including automation in packhouses, and optimal and efficient use of SPS inspectors.

Bangladesh, Uganda, Cambodia
Global Alliance for Trade Facilitation
The Global Alliance for Trade Facilitation is a public-private partnership for trade-led growth, supporting governments in developing and least-developed countries in implementing the World Trade Organization’s Trade Facilitation Agreement. By bringing together governments and businesses of all sizes as equal partners to deliver targeted trade reforms, the Alliance cuts through red tape and end costly delays at borders.