High coffee prices in the global market in 2021 saw Kenya earn more from the crop despite a decline in the quantities exported, the government statistics agency said in a report on Tuesday
The east African nation earned 24.2 billion shillings (213 million U.S. dollars) in the period January to November 2021, with the value surpassing the entire 2020 earnings that stood at 196 million dollars, the Kenya National Bureau of Statistics (KNBS) said.
During the 2021 trading period, Kenya’s coffee prices ranged from 4 dollars to 6.3 dollars, up from 2.5 dollars to 5.9 dollars in 2020, according to KNBS.
However, despite the rise in earnings, the quantity of coffee exported declined as production continued to dwindle for the second consecutive year.
Kenya exported 35,163 metric tons (MT) of coffee in the first 11 months of 2021, a decline from 40,980 MT in a similar period in 2020, according to KNBS. KNBS said that with the country exporting an average of 2,500 MT of coffee a month, the export quantities in 2021 would not surpass the 2020 figures.
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Kenya’s coffee production has been on a decline as many farmers take to other crops in particular avocado and macadamia while others sell their farmlands to real estate developers due to various challenges.
Kenya is the fifth largest producer of coffee in Africa, coming after Ethiopia (7.38 million 60 kg bags), Uganda (5.62 million bags), Cote d’Ivoire (1.78 million bags) and Tanzania (913,000 bags).
The country produces an average of 800,000 bags of coffee annually, according to the International Coffee Organization.