Coffee association estimates 1,000-ton shipment

LOCAL NEWS

Myanmar’s coffee production is likely to reach 2,000-2,500 tons at harvest time this year, and about 1,000 tons of coffee is expected to be shipped to external markets, according to the Myanmar Coffee Association.
“The production is estimated around 2,000-2,500 tons. We aim to export 800-1,000 tons of coffee this year. The rest will be distributed in the local and border market,” said U Myo Aye, chair of the Myanmar Coffee Association.
The association will work to link with international buyers, he said.
“Myanmar primarily produces Arabica coffee. Specialty coffee fetches as much as US$4,500-10,000 per ton. Myanmar’s specialty coffee beans are highly demanded due to their high quality and organic production. If we cannot maintain good agricultural practices, coffee will not get a high price,” said U Myo Aye.
Coffee beans are harvested between December and February. Then, the beans are introduced to foreign buyers. At present, Myanmar coffee is mostly exported to the US market, according to the Agriculture Department.
“Myanmar’s coffee has already earned a good reputation. It has penetrated markets in Asia such as Hong Kong and Singapore, European countries, and the US, and it has a good potential in the global market,” said an official from the Agriculture Department.
Myanmar’s coffee has grabbed a market share in the US, with the support of USAID and WinRock International NGO. Efforts are being made to penetrate markets in Japan, the Republic of Korea, and Canada.
“Myanmar, being rich in land resources, can grow both Arabica, or highland coffee, which grows best above 2,500 feet, and Robusta, or lowland coffee. The country still has untouched land suitable for coffee plantation. Coffee bean is a profitable cash crop and so, expansion of coffee plantations can be a promising source of revenue generation for the country. However, growers have limited access to loans. So, government-backed loans might help develop the coffee sector,” said a coffee producer.
There are 40,000 acres of highland coffee plantations and about 10,000 acres under lowland coffee in Myanmar, totaling 50,000 acres. Shan State is the main producer of coffee beans. Myanmar’s coffee beans fetch $1,000-8,000 and more in the market. – GNLM (Translated by Ei Myat Mon)

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