LONDON — World coffee prices are likely to remain high, helping debt-burdened coffee exporting nations but hurting the consumer, industry officials say.
The officials, here for last week's meeting of the International Coffee Organization (ICO), said the sharp price increase, spurred by a drought in Brazil, the world's biggest coffee producer, will remain for months to come.
Brazil, which produces a third of the coffee exported around the world, recently announced that its current crop would be less than 40% of last year's, the second-worst on record.
Members of the coffee organization control 90% of the $12-billion annual coffee trade.
Effect of Declining Dollar
Coffee is now one of the few commodities that has risen in price in the past year, providing Third World producers with a badly needed boost in income. Most world commodities are selling at their lowest point in years due to sluggish demand from the major industrialized countries.