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Coffee Rises to Two-Year High as Rain May Slow Vietnam Harvest

Nov. 8 (Bloomberg) -- Robusta coffee rose in London to the highest price in more than two years on speculation adverse weather may delay harvesting in Vietnam, the world’s largest producer of the variety. Coffee prices in New York also climbed.

Vietnam’s harvest usually starts in November and may be delayed by rains in the country’s Central Highlands, according to Andrea Thompson, an analyst at CoffeeNetwork in Belfast, Northern Ireland. Concern about the crop helped robusta, used in espresso and instant coffee, to surge 22 percent in the past month.

“The market rallied last week and consolidated, so it was set from a technical standpoint to rally further today,” Thompson said. “This has been aided fundamentally by further reports from Vietnam of continued rain and potential harvest delay.”

Robusta for January delivery gained $44, or 2.2 percent, to $2,030 a metric ton on NYSE Liffe at 1:07 p.m. in London. The beans reached $2,037, the highest price since Oct. 3, 2008.

Arabica coffee for December delivery climbed 2.4 cents, or 1.2 percent, to $2.0755 a pound on ICE Futures U.S. in New York.

Sugar advanced on speculation that India, the world’s second-biggest producer and largest consumer, may be lower than estimated. Flooding in the state of Uttar Pradesh triggered cuts to crop forecasts, according to an e-mailed report from New York-based Commodore Research & Consultancy.

Shipments From India

“A smaller than originally expected Indian sugar crop will likely lead to India exporting 1.5 to 2 million tons of sugar this year,” with the total crop between 24.5 million and 25.5 million tons, Commodore analysts wrote. “Earlier in the year, Indian sugar production was expected to total as much as 26 million tons and exports were expected to total as high as 3.5 million tons.”

Raw sugar for March delivery climbed 0.07 cent, or 0.2 percent, to 31.82 cents a pound in New York. Last week the sweetener reached 32.3 cents, the highest price for a most-active contract since Jan. 8, 1981.

White, or refined, sugar for March delivery fell 60 cents to $778 a ton on NYSE Liffe. Last week prices reached $788, the highest level for a most-active contract for data compiled by Bloomberg going back to January 1989.

Cocoa for December delivery fell 0.6 percent to 1,776 pounds ($2,867) a ton on NYSE Liffe. In New York, cocoa for March delivery dropped 0.9 percent to $2,748 a ton.

To contact the reporter on this story: Stephen Morris in London at smorris39@bloomberg.net.

To contact the editor responsible for this story: Claudia Carpenter at ccarpenter2@bloomberg.net

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