Severe drought could affect China's coffee industry (2)

15:40, May 01, 2010      

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The key months for coffee planting in China stretch from October to March when coffee trees blossom and mature. The persistent drought since last September had dried many coffee cherries before they had matured.

"The coffee plants failed to flower or just withered," Liu said. "This will cast a shadow over the coffee bean yield in the next two years."

The drought has parched the southern areas of Yunnan Province, the northeast regions of Guizhou Province, and the eastern and southern parts of Guangxi Zhuang Autonomous Region.

The drought was among the most severe in decades and more than 20 million people and 10 million head of livestock were affected by water shortages at the drought's peak.

The CAYN investigation found the quality of coffee beans produced in Yunnan this year was far below that of normal years, resulting in losses of at least 38 million yuan (5.56 million U.S. dollars).

Yunnan supplies coffee beans to international brands, including Nescafe and Maxwell House.

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