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Ecuador Forecast to Increase Coffee Harvest as Rains Stabilize

Coffee production in Ecuador, South America’s second-biggest producer of Robusta beans, is poised to jump 7.7 percent this year as rainfall patterns return to normal, said the National Coffee Council’s lead investigator.

Ecuador will boost output to about 700,000 bags in 2013 from an estimated 650,000 bags last year, Luis Duicela, director of the technical division at the council, known as Cofenac, said today by telephone from Portoviejo, Ecuador. The year is off to a “good start” and plants received enough rainfall during their flowering stage this month, he said.

Ecuadorean producers are recovering from the late, above- average rainfall in 2012, which reduced harvests of Arabica beans and increased diseases like leaf rust, Duicela said. With a normal start to this year’s rainy season in the coastal lowlands, Cofenac is forecasting a “significant increase” in output, he said.

“We’re registering an adequate level of precipitation and a significant increase in production is projected for 2013,” Duicela said. Rains “began on time and there is a good fructification and initial development of the fruit,” he said.

A bag weighs 60 kilograms, or 132 pounds. Brazil is the world’s biggest coffee producer.

To contact the reporter on this story: Nathan Gill in Quito at ngill4@bloomberg.net

To contact the editor responsible for this story: James Attwood at jattwood3@bloomberg.net

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