Sunday, April 17, 2011

Coffee growers urged to cash in on high prices

Coffee Industry Corporation chief executive officer Navi Anis has urged growers to make the most of current record price highs.

Women sorting out coffee beans in a shed used by exporter, Monpi Coffee, in Goroka last Wednesday.-Pictures by MALUM NALU
The price of Arabica coffee is now at a record high, fetching K7 to K7.50/kg for parchment or factory door in the main highlands centres, up from the normal K3/kg.
Coastal variety Robusta is popping up at the Lae market at K4/kg.
Business is subsequently booming in the main highlands centres of Kainantu and Goroka in Eastern Highlands; Kundiawa in Chimbu; Minj and Banz in the proposed Jiwaka; Mt Hagen in Western Highlands; and Wapenamenda in Enga.

Even the smaller Arabica coffee centres such as Wau, Bulolo and Aseki in Morobe are benefitting from the price hike.
The CIC’s weekly market report last week said prices were lower at the beginning of the week but had experienced a sharp hike.
It reported that Arabica gained by a hefty 15.2% and Robusta by 4.8%.
“Prices have been on the increase for the last 12 months as a result of some weather-related problems in some of our competitors,” Anis said.

“The biggest beneficiaries at the moment are the growers.
“Not too long ago, it was K3 per kg, now it’s K7-K8 per kg.
“What you see now is 15-year record highs.
“The price has been going up, and up and up.
“It has now stabilised at 260 US cents per pound, which is about K13 or K14 green bean, FOB ex Lae.
“The global market outlook is that it will hold for some time.”
Anis said statistics also pointed to a global increase in coffee consumption and this augered well for the PNG industry.

“Global consumption has always been going up,” he said.
“We think the prices will hold, at least for the immediate future.”

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