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VIETNAM – Farmers hold back on coffee sales, hope for higher prices

MILAN – According to trade sources, coffee sales in Vietnam are slowing down this week with farmers holding back their stock in the expectation of higher prices and buyers waiting fresh Robusta beans from the new harvest, which is due to start next month.

Robusta eased to 36,600-37,000 dong ($1.74-$1.75) per kg in Buon Ma Thuot on Tuesday, from 37,000-37,500 dong a week ago, tracking loses in London futures prices.

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According to the Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development (MARD), the export prices have been unstable. The main export items such as rice, coffee and rubber have seen the export volumes drop sharply.

The coffee exports in the first 8 months of the year decreased significantly partially because of the problems faced by domestic enterprises. Though the world’s coffee price has increased slightly, Vietnam’s export turnover still decreased by 22.5 percent due to the 23 percent decrease in quantity.

Germany and the US, the two biggest markets for Vietnam, saw the imports down by 20 and 30 percent, respectively.

In other news, Starbucks on Thursday opened its second coffee store in Vietnam at the corner of Nguyen Du and Nam Ky Khoi Nghia streets in HCMC’s District 1, inside the President Place office building.

The second store has marked an important milestone in the plan of expanding the store chain bearing the Starbucks brand in Vietnam, Patricia Marques, general director of the firm, said in a press conference.

Like the first store, the second store of Starbucks will also introduce its localized product Starbucks Asian Dolce Latte that is also the latest product of the U.S.-based company globally.