Bloomberg News

Kenya Offers 19,000 Bags of Coffee Beans as Auctions Resume

June 27, 2011

(Updates with comments on quality in third paragraph.)

June 27 (Bloomberg) -- Kenya plans to offer as many as 19,000 50-kilogram (110-pound) bags of coffee for sale tomorrow when auctions restart after a break of more than two months, the Nairobi Coffee Exchange said.

That compares with about 12,100 bags offered at the previous auction on April 19, David Mureithi, the exchange’s acting chief executive officer, said by phone today from the capital, Nairobi.

The quality of the beans being sold tomorrow is better than at the last sale because of new production from Kenya’s eastern region, Mureithi said. Kenya started its traditional break in coffee sales earlier than usual this year due to low supplies.

Kenya is trying to help small-scale farmers revive output, which dropped from more than 100,000 metric tons in 1988-89 because of a slump in global prices and farm mismanagement.

The East African nation may produce 40,000 tons this season, James Wahome, quality manager at the Coffee Board of Kenya, said on Jan. 17. Kenya produced 45,000 tons last year.

Farmers in Kenya harvest the bulk of their crop from October through December, while a secondary crop is reaped from April to June.

--Editors: Alastair Reed, John Deane.

To contact the reporter on this story: Fred Ojambo in Kampala at

To contact the editor responsible for this story: Paul Richardson at

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