Coffee production in Colombia continues to recover, thanks in large part to the huge replanting programme in the country. However, concern has been expressed about the effects of dryness associated with the El Niño weather phenomenon and the possible effect of coffee berry borer.
The country, which is the world’s leading producer of mild washed Arabica coffee, recorded a harvest of 1.1 million bags in February, a 7 per cent increase compared to February 2015’s coffee production. However, despite the positive growth trend, the country is on alert about the potentially adverse impact of El Niño on Colombian coffee growing.
At the time of writing the Colombian Coffee Growers Federation (FNC) was completing a comprehensive field study to assess the impact of El Niño. The study is based on a sample of 7,000 farms throughout Colombia’s coffee departments. The results of the study will help ensure that the measures adopted to support coffee growers respond to their specific needs.
The FNC has encouraged coffee growers to follow appropriate post-harvesting practices. This will help to mitigate the impact of El Niño on their income while upholding quality and reputation of Colombian coffee in international markets. Similarly, campaigns to control the coffee berry borer are now underway. The fact that CBB spreads more easily during dry seasons makes this a period of particular vulnerability for Colombian coffee growers.
For more information see the forthcoming May 2016 issue of Coffee & Cocoa International.