Tanzania has recorded an eight-year high coffee export this season thanks to lockdown which spiked coffee drinking rates due to the Covid-19 pandemic.
The export in the 2020/21 season was attributed to the fact that the lockdown imposed in many countries worldwide due to Covid -19 tossed many people drink a lot of coffee while working at home.
The export revenue for the just-ended season, according to Tanzania Coffee Board (TCB), increased by slight over 20 per cent to 137million US dollars from 112.85 million US dollars in the 2019/20 season.
However, the last time the country recorded high coffee sales were in 2012/13 after earned 181.79 million US dollars.
Tanzania Coffee Board (TCB) Acting Director-General Mr Primus Kimaryo said 49,616 tons of coffee was sold through direct coffee exports while the remaining 20,772 was auctioned via TCB Coffee Exchange.
“Covid-19 had its pro and cons and the good thing is that lockdown forced people to drink a lot of coffee thereby forcing prices to be favourable in the world market,” Mr Kimaryo said told TCB annual meeting in Dodoma recently.
Robusta coffee dominated the direct coffee exports with 37,694 tonnes equivalent to 75.97 per cent while Arabica share was 11,922 tonnes equivalent to 24.03 per cent.
Also, the number of tonnes sold last year was eight years high after selling 70,388 tonnes compared to 59, 332 tonnes in the previous season. The last time the country exported a big volume was 71,007 tonnes in the 2012/13 season.
THE TCB data showed that the Kagera region led all regions by producing 41,429 tonnes followed by Ruvuma 12,179 tonnes, Songwe (12,178), Mbeya (2,361), Arusha (1,727), and Kilimanjaro (1,610) while Kigoma produced (706). Others were Tanga (122), Njombe (110), Iringa (21.2), Katavi (2.0) and Rukwa produced only (1.0).
TBC said they projected the 2021/22 production to drop to 65,000 tonnes out of which Robusta production will be 35,000 tons while Arabica will be 30,000 tons.
“The drop will be due to the fluctuating coffee cycle and delays in the start of heavy rainfall in the Northern Zone,” Mr Kimaryo said.
The country is exporting coffee to mainly European Union (EU) which leads and accounts 46 per cent of Dar es Salaam export followed by Japan 28 per cent then US 6.0 per cent while countries like India, Australia, Lebanon, Latvia, China, Algeria, Morocco, Libya and South Africa combined consumed the remaining 20 per cent.