By Lise Alves, Senior Contributing Reporter
SÃO PAULO, BRAZIL – Coffee growers in Brazil are gearing up to what promises to be the second best harvest in history, with forecasts for the 2016 Brazilian coffee harvest between 49.13 and 51.94 million bags, up by 13.6 percent to 20.1 percent from the 2015 harvest results, according to the government’s National Supply Company (CONAB).
Despite the adverse weather brought on by the El Nino phenomenon during the fourth quarter of 2015, Brazilian coffee producers should harvest over 37.7 million bags of Arabica-type coffee.
This bean type accounts for almost eighty percent of all coffee grown in the country. The other type of coffee grown in Brazil, the robusta grain, is estimated to yield between eleven and twelve million bags this season.
These record harvest estimates in 2016 are in line with forecasts by National Coffee Council (CNC) that calls for a harvest of 49.7 million bags this season.
According the CNC the record harvest is not only due to the improvement of climate conditions since the end of last year for the development of the crops, but also due to the fact that 2016 is an ‘up’ cycle year, where coffee harvests usually register an increase in production.
The coffee producers say that the increase in volume will be mostly due to a gain by ten percent in productivity, since the size of the planted area should not be much different than that registered during the past two years.
As for coffee exports by Brazil, the country registered a new record last year, according to CECAFE (Brazilian Council of Coffee Exporters), with a volume of 36.89 million bags shipped abroad in 2015, up by 1.3 percent from 2014.