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Coffee Extends Rally to 13-Year High; Sugar Falls, Cocoa Gains

Sept. 8 (Bloomberg) -- Coffee rose in New York, extending a rally to a 13-year high, on speculation that supplies will lag behind demand. Raw sugar dropped, and cocoa gained.

Coffee has surged 54 percent in the past year amid slumping inventories and concern that too much rain would damage South American crops. Colombia’s harvest may decline in 2011 after wet weather caused the worst outbreak of a plant-damaging fungus in a quarter-century, a grower in Antioquia, the leading provincial producer, said last week.

“Fear of supply shortage is bringing more and more speculators on the bandwagon, driving prices up ahead of the upcoming harvest in Colombia and Central America,” said Carsten Fritsch, a Commerzbank AG analyst in Frankfurt.

Arabica coffee futures for December delivery rose 2.25 cents, or 1.2 percent, to settle at $1.9455 a pound at 2 p.m. on ICE Futures U.S. in New York. Earlier, the price reached $1.9865, the highest level for a most-active contract since August 1997.

Robusta coffee futures for November delivery climbed $15, or 0.9 percent to $1,635 a metric ton on NYSE Liffe in London.

Brazil is the world’s largest producer of arabica beans, followed by Colombia.

Sugar, Cocoa

Raw-sugar futures for October delivery fell 0.07 cent, or 0.3 percent, to 21.38 cents a pound in New York. Earlier, the price reached 21.75 cents, the highest level since March 8.

Refined-sugar futures for December delivery advanced $50, or 0.1 percent, to $559.10 a ton in London.

The Agriculture Ministry in Brazil, the largest producer, lowered its crop forecast this month because of dry weather. Flooding in Pakistan has destroyed at least $1 billion of crops and killed 10 million head of livestock.

There are “continued worries of dryness in Brazil and damage in Pakistan,” Jake Wetherall, a trader at Rabobank International in London, said in an e-mail.

Cocoa futures for December delivery rose $14, or 0.5 percent, to $2,736 a metric ton in New York.

In London, cocoa futures for September delivery fell 36 pounds, or 1.9 percent, to 1,907 pounds ($2,953) a ton.

To contact the reporters on this story: Chris Kay in London at ckay5@bloomberg.net; Debarati Roy in New York at droy5@bloomberg.net

To contact the editor responsible for this story: Patrick McKiernan in New York at pmckiernan@bloomberg.net

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