The resurgence of Colombia’s coffee production is continuing, despite some dry weather in recent months, as replanted coffee trees mature.
In August Colombia, the world’s second largest producer of arabica coffee, produced 1.26m bags, up 10% from the same time last year, according to data from the Colombian coffee growers’ association Fedecafe.
Fedecafe maintained a production outlook of 12.5m-13,0m bags of coffee in 2015, which has been in place through the summer despite dry weather across some key growing regions.
The Colombian government has pinned hopes for 2015 production at 13m tonnes.
Dry weather fears
In August forecaster MDA Weather Services reported that the southern part of Colombia’s coffee belt had seen only 15% of normal rainfall over the past two months, with 30% of normal rains in the north.
Dryness in Columbia is associated with the El Nino effect, with this years event one of the strongest on record.
Dryness in the coffee belt threatens a key production period in last three months of the year, although due to its mountainous landscape and tropical location, Columbia can produces coffee year round, with different crops at the various altitudes.
Last month coffee-trading house Volcafe maintained its forecast of 12.5 bags in 2014-2015, and 13m bags in 2015-2016, but warned of the need for rains.
“The lower than average rainfall has not yet impacted yields, but rains in the coming weeks will be important for the coming production,” Volcafe said.
But the effects of dryness are being offset by the large number of new coffee trees reaching reproductive age.
Colombian production has been rebounding after a large scale replanting programme, that was bought in to replace existing trees with new disease resistant varieties.
The replanting was prompted by the spread of “rust”, a fungal disease that devastated harvests in 2013.
The country-wide replanting programme lead to fall in production as mature trees were uprooted.
But with large areas of trees now reaching reproductive age, Colombian production has rebounding.
“Colombia has been producing very high volumes,” Carlos Mera, senior analyst at Rabobank told Agrimoney.com.
It has been dry,” he noted, “and it will probably affect the crop next year a little bit”.
But Mr Mera said that as new areas came into production, they would “offset the drought in the last few months”.
(Source – http://www.blackseagrain.net/novosti/colombia-coffee-harvest-extends-recovery-despite-dryness)