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Coffee Prices Remain Relatively Low Following Record-High Brazil Exports

photo by Fernando Mafra

photo by Fernando Mafra

After five straight months of declines, green coffee prices increased a modest 1.6 percent in April, remaining relatively low, according to the latest monthly report from the International Coffee Organization.

The ICO tracked modest gains in all commodity arabica categories in April — Brazilian naturals, Colombian milds, and other milds — with its composite indicator price averaging $1.29 USD per pound. That includes robustas, which dropped in price by 0.1 percent to a 15-month low.

In its April report, the ICO presents some final numbers of the 2014/15 (April to March) crop year in Brazil, which exported a record-high 36.8 million bags, a 12.4 percent increase over the previous year. Brazilian agriculture agency Conab is estimating the 2015/16 production in Brazil will be between 44.1 and 46.6 million bags. With Brazil’s domestic consumption at estimated at approximately 21 million bags, the ICO suggests export availability could be significantly reduced in 2015/16.

“Assuming that domestic consumption stays in the region of 21 million bags, this would only give an exportable production availability of just 24 million bags or so,” the group said. “As a result, it is likely that Brazilian exports over the next 12 months are going to be significantly lower.”

Exports from Brazil and Colombia increased in March 2015 over March 2014, and the two countries are buoying global exports through the first half of the coffee year (October to March) to 53.1 million bags, a modest 3.3 percent decrease from the same period last year. Notably, shipments exports from Vietnam have fallen to a four-year low, while exports from Indonesia are down more than 30 percent from last year.

For more on the ICO’s monthly report, including additional detail on Brazil export estimates, domestic stocks and consumer stocks, download a pdf of the full report.