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Coffee Price Hits 10-Year High in Vietnam
22 | 07 | 2007
Wholesale coffee bean prices recently soared by 13.8 per cent to a ten-year record high of VND25.3 million (US$1,581) per ton in the central highlands region, the largest coffee growing area in Vietnam, said the Vietnam Coffee and Cocoa Association (Vicofa).
Vicofa attributed the price hike to the global coffee price peak of US$1,695 a ton May 16, up US$29 and a new eight-year high, on thin supply and fears of a poor crop in Brazil, the world’s biggest coffee supplier.
Increasing domestic prices already pushed export quotes to US$1,650-US$1,660 a ton, free on board at Saigon Port, according to the association.
International Coffee Organization executive director Nestor Osorio said May 16 that Vietnamese production in the October 2007 to September 2008 crop would be similar to the 15.5 million bags estimated for the 2006-2007 crop.
Vietnam is currently the world’s biggest exporter of Robusta coffee, used widely to make instant coffee. Vietnamese coffee products are being exported to 59 countries and territories, Germany, the US, Singapore and Japan being the largest markets.
The association has proposed the government and relevant offices develop dedicated coffee growing areas to stabilize output, ideally at 750,000 tons a year, and maintain coffee quality as well.
Local farmers and enterprises should join hands to grow and process coffee on a larger scale by employing more advanced equipment and technologies, the association said, noting that many of Vietnam’s coffee exporters are weak in finance, trade expertise, and information analysis capability.
Coffee experienced its highest growth rate of 134.8 per cent to hit US$947 million in the first four months this year, backed by high prices in deals between September 2006 and March 2007.
Vietnam’s next coffee harvest will start from late October when the new crop year begins. That means a good supply of fresh beans will only be available for export from late November, when the four-month harvest starts to peak.

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