African countries are getting a taste of authentic food from central China as Hunan Province begins to deliver tens of thousands of frozen ready meals to the continent.
More than 80,000 dishes, worth 101,000 U.S. dollars, have been dispatched from Hunan to Kenya, in the biggest ever export of Hunan cuisine, said the Entry-Exit Inspection and Quarantine Bureau of Changsha City on Tuesday.
Chefs working for Xincongchu Food Company cooked, packed and froze the dishes. Consumers will be able to enjoy the food after reheating it in microwave ovens.
Nearly all the dishes have been pre-ordered by restaurants and hotels in Kenya. In future, the ready meals will be exported to other African countries including Ethiopia and Tanzania.
Chen Jie, deputy head of the Changsha bureau's food safety department, said the food has passed comprehensive safety tests for heavy metals and microorganisms, and that the exports should help increase the popularity of Chinese food abroad.
Hunan cuisine, also known as Xiang cuisine, is known for its hot spicy flavor, fresh aroma and deep color.