Brazil, the biggest coffee producer and exporter, reduced its estimate for the current crop on further evidence of damage from the worst drought in decades.
The country probably will harvest 44.6 million bags of the bean, the government’s crop forecasting agency Conab said in an e-mailed statement today. That compares with a range of 46.5 million to 50.2 million bags forecast in January and 49.2 million bags produced last year.
High temperatures and low rainfall in growing areas have fueled a 65 percent surge in prices this year and are expected to cut output for the mild-tasting arabica type used in blends for Starbucks Corp. and Nestle SA by 16 percent to 32.2 million 60-kilogram bags from 38.3 million last year.
“The losses in arabica can be attributed to the drought, tree cropping and the reversal of the two-year cycle in some areas,” Conab said in the statement.
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