India's coffee exports drop by 5.07% in FY21 as lockdowns across Europe impact trade

The situation is likely to be more or less the same next fiscal, as well as a lot, depends on the Covid situation
Last Updated 31 March 2021, 13:41 IST

India’s coffee exports have declined 5.07% in the financial year ended March 2021 at 3,09,004 tonnes compared to 3,25,513 tonnes exported in the previous year. The decline in exports is largely due to Covid-induced lockdowns across major consuming countries such as Italy, UK and other European countries.

According to exporters, the order position is weak as coffee bars and restaurants, which are major buyers of Indian coffee, are still shut down across Europe. “Coffee bars are closed due to second lockdowns, which we had not anticipated. We had expected some drop in exports and the performance this year has been in line with the expectations,” Ramesh Rajah, President, Coffee Exporters Association told DH.

The situation is likely to be more or less the same next fiscal, as well as a lot, depends on the Covid situation. Earlier, the trade had anticipated about 10% growth for next fiscal, but it is likely to remain flat, he said.

In addition to lockdowns, exporters are affected by other factors like shortage of containers and high freight rates as well as pending dues from the government under the MEIS scheme, he added.

The delay in the release of export incentive under the existing MEIS and the new RoDTEP schemes is affecting exporters. In fact, the government is yet to announce details of incentives under the RoDTEP scheme, he said.

In dollar terms, the value of exports remained flat at $732.5 million as against $731.75 million in the previous fiscal. In rupee terms, exporters earned Rs 5,434 crore as against Rs 5,182 crore, according to data available with the Coffee Board of India.

The unit realisation stood at Rs 1,75,863.37 per tonne as against Rs 1,59,200.83 per tonne in the previous year.

Italy, Belgium and Germany are the top three export markets for Indian coffee, followed by Russian Federation.

Coffee bean harvesting across growing regions in Karnataka, Tamil Nadu and Kerala has come to an end. The initial estimates of the growers show that the crop is in the range of 3,20,000 tonnes with the Robusta crop being almost normal this year.

(Published 31 March 2021, 13:41 IST)

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