Uganda’s exported 333,346 60-kilo bags of coffee worth US$35.74m in March, representing a decrease of 18.68 percent and 29.15 percent in quantity and value, respectively.

In a recently-released report by the Uganda Coffee Development Authority (UCDA), the exports comprised 224,036 bags ($21.85m) of Robusta and 109,310 bags ($13.88m) of Arabica coffee.

The authority further said that compared to the same month last year, Robusta exports decreased by 29.17 percent while Arabica exports increased 16.78 percent.  In terms of value, both Robusta and Arabica decreased by 40.19 percent and 0.14 percent, respectively.

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However, coffee exports for 12 months (April 2017-March 2018) totalled 4.69m bags worth US$528m, compared to 3.90m bags worth US$439m in the previous year (March 2016-February 2017).This was an increase of 20.45 percent and 20.27 percent in quantity and value, respectively.

The European Union was the top destination for Uganda’s coffee exports during the month of March 2018 as the bloc bought 233,958 bags but lower than 246,110 bags exported in the previous month.

EU was followed by Sudan with 45,175 bags compared to 62,932 bags the previous month. USA imported 12,283 bags compared to 11,308. Morocco imported 9,060 bags compared to 8,046 bags and Algeria imported 8,013bags compared to 7,464 bags in February 2018.

Coffee exports to Africa amounted to 69,638 bags, a market share of 20.89% compared to 87,478 (22.41%) bags the previous month.

Among the first 10 importers of Uganda coffee, five were African countries, indicating intercontinental trading, says UCDA.

Some of the buyers of Uganda coffee in March included Olam International, Sucafina S.A, Bernhard Rothfoss, Touton Geneva, Volcate and Ecom Agro Industrial.

The top 10 buyers held a market share of 59.91 percent of total exports higher than 57.97 percent the previous month. Olam International led with a market share of 11.70 percent.

UCDA says 275,178,950 coffee seedlings are currently available in 2,492 coffee nurseries for planting in the five coffee growing regions for the period March and May 2018 season. “Last coffee planting season September/ November 2017, a total of 131,019,698 coffee seedlings was reported planted in 102 coffee growing districts compared to 157,063,064 coffee seedlings that was available in the 2,089 nurseries,” UCDA adds.

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