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Robusta Shipments From Indonesia’s Sumatra Fall 28% in January

Coffee-bean exports from Indonesia’s main growing regions on southern Sumatra fell 28 percent in January from a month earlier because of lower output.

Shipments from Lampung, Bengkulu and South Sumatra provinces, which mostly grow robusta, dropped to 6,306 metric tons from 8,791.5 tons in December, Ardhy Wijaya, head of Lampung’s trade office, said by phone today. Sales were 17,957.5 tons in January last year.

Falling supplies from the world’s third-largest grower may help to support robusta prices, which have declined about 19 percent in London in the past year on concern the European debt crisis may hurt demand of the bitter tasting variety used in instant drinks.

“Export last month was low because of low output last year, so we don’t have much carryover stock from last year’s crops,” Mochtar Lutfie, head of research and development at the Lampung chapter of the Association of Indonesian Coffee Exporters and Industries, said by phone today.

The three provinces account for as much as 80 percent of exports and production from Indonesia. The beans were shipped from Panjang port in Lampung. Vietnam and Brazil are the biggest and second-largest robusta producers.

Robusta futures for March delivery fell 1 percent to $1,800 a ton on the NYSE Liffe in London yesterday.

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