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Robusta Growers in Brazil State Sell 5% of Next Crop, Cepea Says

Robusta coffee growers in the Brazilian state that leads production of the variety sold less of the coming season’s harvest than first estimated before the period starts, Cepea said.

Sales in Espirito Santo came to no more than 5 percent of the 2012-13 crop, against projections for as much as 10 percent, the University of Sao Paulo research group said in a report yesterday. Farmers in the state presold 15 percent to 20 percent of the current season’s harvest, analyst Margarete Boteon said, citing a Cepea survey.

“Due to price drops and refrained sellers, players expect that from January until last week, 5 percent of the production at most has been traded for future delivery,” Boteon said in the report. “This occurred despite the fact that the robusta crop in Espirito Santo state will be significantly higher.”

Harvesting of robusta in Brazil, the world’s second-biggest producer of the variety after Vietnam, usually starts by May. The beans are used in espresso and instant coffee.

Brazil will produce 16.5 million bags of robusta in 2012-13, above a prior 15.33 million-bag forecast, according to Terra Forte Exportacao e Importacao de Cafe Ltda., the nation’s second-largest exporter. Production of the variety was 14.3 million bags in 2011-12 and 13.4 million bags in 2010-11, data from the exporter show.

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