Horticulture Exporters Association of Rwanda (HEAR) interceptions of produce are normal for safety reasons but noted that this case is unique in that the produce was kept for long for testing by plant health certification agents in the UK and ended up being damaged. Rukundo said that the spoiled chilli belonged to four exporters and was is estimated at more than six tonnes. He indicated that the chilli was shipped between July 3 and 10th 2020, but they were declared free from a virus on July 15. "They were held over virus suspicion. Later, they were found to be virus-free. But the time lag is the issue. Normally, the test procedures are supposed to take no more than five days. So, perishables don't go beyond that time. But now, it went to up to 13 days," he said. Fred Rwigamba, the Director of Finance and Operations SOUK Investment Group, a firm engaging in growing and exporting fresh horticulture produce from Rwanda, told The New Times that on July 9, 2020, his firm exported a ...
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