Kenya’s Coffee Prices Climb at First 2013 Sale on Reduced Supply

Kenya coffee prices climbed at the first sale of the year after supplies declined, the Nairobi Coffee Exchange said.

The average price for all coffee sold rose 29 percent to $212.55 a bag, from $164.15 at the Dec. 11 sale, the exchange said by e-mail from Nairobi, the capital, where auctions are held. A bag weighs 50 kilograms (110 pounds).

The average price for the benchmark AA dropped 4.3 percent to $321.67 a bag, within a range of $183 to $356 a bag, it said.

“There was fair demand as buyers were out of the market for some time,” Mansukh Shah, a coffee trader at the Nairobi-based Alanwood Ltd., said by phone. “The quality was average as we still wait for the supply of better beans.”

Germany, the U.S., Canada, the U.K., Belgium, the Netherlands, Luxembourg, Sweden and Finland are some of the main importers of Kenyan beans, according to the Kenya Coffee Producers and Traders Association, which owns the Nairobi Coffee Exchange.

Sales at the auction more than doubled to 9,429 bags worth $2.44 million from 4,243 bags valued at $851,663 at the previous auction, the exchange said.

Kenya harvests an early crop from May through July, while the main crop is reaped from September through December, according to the Kenya traders group. The coffee season runs from Oct. 1 through September.

The following are details of today’s auction in U.S. dollars per 50-kilogram bag:

Grade          Low            High          Average
AA             183            356           321.67
AB             146            237           209.25
C              145            183           164.02
HE             142            145           144.43
MH             102            119           114.87
ML              74             85            80.99
PB             157            252           209.26
T              101            151           142.79
TT             152            217           186.95
UG1            146            150           149.02
UG2            135            138           136.42
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