Uganda coffee exports benefit from favourable prices despite 20% decline in volume

UGANDA – After a full-year of bullish coffee exports, Uganda’s trade of the commodity in terms of quantity has plunged by 20.43% in the month of February 2022 to 448,957 60-kilo bags.

Despite the dip in quantity compared to the 563,763 bags of coffee exported the previous corresponding period last year, the East African country fetched a higher amount during the period under review.

According to the monthly report by the Uganda Coffee Development Authority, Uganda fetched US$ 72.17 million, 42.44% higher compared to the same month last year which stood at US$50.55 million.

The higher earnings is attributed to favourable prices in the global market, driven by shortage of shipping containers in Asia and weather-related concerns in Brazil, one of the world’s leading coffee producers.

Meanwhile, the decline in volumes has been linked to drought that cut yields in some parts of the country.

From the total exported amounts, Robusta comprised of 351,944 bags valued at US $45.9 million and Arabica totalled 97,013 bags valued at US$ 26.27 million.

Although Robusta decreased by 29.91% in quantity, it increased by 11.75% in value, while Arabica exports increased by 56.28% and 173.86% in quantity and value respectively.

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The Increase in Arabica coffee exports is due to an on-year cycle characteristic of Arabica coffee production.

Overall, Uganda coffee exports for the 12 months (March 2021-February 2022) amounted to 6,607,963 60-kilo bags worth US$ 762.60 million compared to 5,556,059 60-kilo bags valued at US$ 515.57 million the previous year.

This represents 18.93% and 47.91% increase in both quantity and value respectively.

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During the period under review, Italy maintained the highest market share with 38.02% compared with 30.03% last month.

It was followed by Sudan 15.23%, Germany 11.96%, India 6.54% and United States 4.39%.

Coffee exports to Africa amounted to 94,647 bags, a market share of 21% compared to 97,554 the previous month.

African countries included Algeria, Sudan, Morocco, Egypt, South Africa, South Sudan, Tanzania and Kenya.

Europe remained the main destination for Uganda’s coffees with 62% imports share lower than 58% in January 2022.

Shifting focus to the global scene, World coffee exports for January 2022 amounted to 10.86 million bags up by 2% from 10.65 million bags in January 2021.

Coffee production for 2021/222 coffee year is estimated to decrease by 2.1% to 167.2 million bags down from 170.83 million bags in Coffee Year 2020/21.

Global consumption is estimated to increase by 3.3% % to 170.3 million bags in 2021/22 coffee year compared to 164.9 million bags in 2020/21.

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