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Kenya’s Benchmark Coffee Price Declines 5.3%, Exchange Says

Dec. 14 (Bloomberg) -- Kenya’s benchmark coffee grade fell 5.3 percent at the last auction of the year as demand slowed, the Nairobi Coffee Exchange said.

The average price for the benchmark AA grade declined to $422.62 for one bag, equal to 50 kilograms (110 pounds), compared with $446.14 a week earlier, the exchange said in an e-mailed report today. The average price for all the coffee sold fell 1.7 percent to $335.08 a bag from $340.95 a bag last week, the exchange said. The agency resumes auctions on Jan. 10.

“Buyers were less active today as we head to the festive season,” David Muriithi, acting chief executive officer, said by phone from Nairobi. “And the quality didn’t measure up to that of last week.”

Sales at the auction fell almost 27 percent to 7,121 bags valued at $2.91 million, from 9,732 bags worth $4.1 million at the previous auction, the exchange said.

Supplies fell almost 17 percent to 13,821 bags from 16,610 bags last week, the exchange said.

The country harvests the bulk of its crop from October through December, while a secondary crop is reaped from April to June. The following are details of today’s auction in U.S. dollars for a 50-kilogram bag:

Grade              Low            High              Average
AA                 291            510                422.62
AB                 250            452                368.81
C                  242            325                273.57
E                  387            387                387.00
HE                 228            249                233.10
MH                 163            205                184.01
ML                  88            173                119.58
PB                 248            453                371.03
SB                  90             93                 91.37
T                   86            245                228.05
TT                 243            367                302.55
UG                 242            242                242.00
UG1                224            250                236.74
UG2                140            244                202.37

To contact the reporter on this story: Fred Ojambo in Kampala at fojambo@bloomberg.net

To contact the editor responsible for this story: Alastair Reed at areed12@bloomberg.net

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