Robusta surge expected to brew up higher coffee output

India’s coffee production is forecast to increase by 1 lakh bags to 5.1 million on higher robusta output in Karnataka, the largest coffee producing state, according to the Karnataka Planters Association (KPA) Chairman D Govindappa Jayaram.

Briefing reporters on Wednesday, Jayaram said arabica production is forecast modestly lower as it enters the off-year of the biennial production cycle. Forecast for bean exports is unchanged at 3.7 million. The Coffee Board’s final estimate for 2013-14 is 3,04,500 lakh metric tonnes comprising 1,02,200 metric tonnes of arabica and 2,02,300 metric tonnes of robusta.

The final estimate for Karnataka is 2,11,100 tonnes with 78,440 tonnes of arabica and 1,32,600 tonnes of robusta. Post-blossom forecast for 2014-15 is placed at 3,44,750 metric tonnes comprising 1,05,500 tonnes of arabica and 2,39,250 tonnes of robusta.“We, however, estimate that production will decline 20-30 per cent during 2013-14 and the estimate of the Coffee Board during 2014-15 will not be reached, in particular, arabica coffee which has seen severe incidence of white stem borer,” Jayaram said.

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