Brazil’s latest plight, the reduction of the coffee harvest, is the result of earlier difficult weather conditions such as drought and frost.

The coffee trees are finally showing the impact of the bad weather. These effects could continue for a while, threatening Brazilian coffee producers in addition to uncertain weather patterns. Major extremes between temperature highs and lows are becoming a constant challenge.

September usually marks the beginning of a new season, when coffee trees blossom after the first rains. But Brazilian growers have reported strange phenomena. The leaves of the trees fall off, and the flowers have a strange shape. The fruits also fall to the ground before they can even ripen.

On a farm in Monte Santo de Minas, the agronomists were reluctant to forecast yields because the trees had significant damage.

Agronomists don’t even want to give me an estimate for my production, because there is just so much we don’t know.

Farm owner (source: Bloomberg)

Carlos Augusto Rodrigues de Melo, president of one of the largest cooperatives in the world, Cooxupé, is still optimistic. The time of regular rains has finally arrived and will give the coffee trees some breathing space. He expects next year’s harvest to be better than last year’s, despite the problems reported so far.

Brazil, the world’s largest coffee producer, has just finished its last harvest. As yield was low, coffee stocks were also likely to fall to a record low. Cooxupé ended the harvest with 6 million 60-kg bags. This is a similar level to last year, but less than 8 million bags in 2020, the last “normal” harvest in Brazil.

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In Colombia, the world’s second-largest coffee producer, La Niña is threatening coffee production and putting additional pressure on global stocks. Coffee exports in Colombia have fallen by 25% to 820,000 60-kg bags. Together with the problems in other countries, this will contribute to food inflation.

As a result, coffee prices have already risen from a 2-1/2 week low following news of hail and heavy rains in the state of Minas Gerais, which accounts for about 30% of Brazilian coffee production. It was reported that the rainfall was 185% above average for this time of year.

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