Coffee business posts worst quarter in March
The commodity market is also bearing the brunt of the pandemic consequences. For instance, coffee is heading for the biggest quarterly loss as the coronavirus is hurting demand. Coffee futures have been slowly declining since May last year. However, after the pandemic, they have reached the bottom.
The shutdown of the largest coffee buyers, e.g. restaurants, cafes, and other catering outlets has affected demand significantly. Therefore, Arabica coffee prices tumbled by 16% since the end of March amid lockdowns and a drop in consumption caused by the global economic slowdown. Coffee retailers also felt the pinch of the quarantine restrictions. Small coffee shops incurred serious losses as people stayed at home and did not buy a cup of coffee on their way to work. As a result, the current fiscal quarter was one of the worst in history for coffee producers. The gradual reopening of cafes and restaurants gave a weak impetus to the growth of coffee contracts on the London and New York exchanges. Nevertheless, they are inching up at almost an unnoticeable pace. Arabica rose by 4% to $1 a pound (about 450 grams), while Robusta coffee gained 2.3% to $ 1.2.
In some countries, coffee prices are still climbing up. For instance, in Russia, they are unlikely to fall due to the difficulties in logistics and the unstable economic situation. According to statistics, in Russia, coffee sales in the first quarter collapsed by almost a third, and the average coffee price increased by 19%.