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Uganda Coffee Exports hit 30-year record high

KAMPALA, (The Southern African Times) – Uganda’s coffee exports in June and for the 2020/21 financial year hit a 30-year record high, according to the Uganda Coffee Development Authority (UCDA).

The East African country exported 618,388 60-kg bags worth 58.56 million U.S. dollars in June, the highest monthly record since 1991, and an increase of 47 percent in quantity and value from a year ago, according to a report published by the UCDA Sunday.

In the year ending June, Uganda exported 6,078,638 60-kg bags worth 559.26 million dollars, up from 5,105,881 60-kg bags valued at 496.28 million dollars the previous year, Apollo Tugume Kamugisha, director of development services at the UCDA, told Xinhua by telephone.

The high yields were a result of the government’s intensive coffee growing campaign that started in 2014, said Kamugisha, adding that 302 million coffee seedlings were distributed to farmers countrywide.

“Since coffee takes about three years to mature and come into production, that is why we are seeing high yields this year,” he said.

A positive trend in global coffee prices in the last two weeks of June prompted exporters to release their stocks, according to Kamugisha.

The UCDA has also been engaging farmers in best handling practices to avoid post-harvest losses, he said.

“As a result, farmers stopped harvesting immature coffee and learnt how to dry the harvest well, resulting into higher value of export quality,” he said.

The official predicted that an upward trend would continue now that the coffee sector had rebounded. 

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