Industry players are again contemplating sending green or unroasted beans to China in an effort to offset reduced demand in Japan, the largest buying market for Jamaica Blue Mountain (JBM) coffee.
The source indicates that its a real possibility despite concerns about the Chinese market and the potential for unauthorised blending of beans.
“We have to try something,” added the source.
In 2011, the Coffee Industry of Jamaica (CIB) sent its first shipment of green beans to China. The CIB sent representatives to live in the country in order to streamline the supply chain. The deal signed with Zhejiang Dunn’s River Import and Export Company Limited, would handle the commercial transactions of the Hangzhou Coffee and Western Foods. The deal was met with ambivalence from some Japanese buyers who questioned the price at which the beans were sold to China. The deal with the major importer wasn’t continued after the initial two year attempt. But with the softening of the Japanese market the search for new markets are inevitable.As the industry can no longer avoid the world’s second largest economy.
Coffee shortage continues to affect the availability of Jamaica Blue Mountain JBM beans. Its based on a confluence of factors now led by drought.
Less beans resulted in price increases of roughly 40% in real terms to consumers. Interestingly small farmers benefit with box prices of coffee cherries inching past J$8,000 (U$70).
” I hear they paying up to J$9,500 a box,” a source indicated.
To consumers it resulted in a shortage of favourite brands.
For instance, the beans of large supplier Jablum remain out of stock–going three months now or since November. “We won’t have brand before April,” another source said this week.
Twymans –started restricting sales.
Amber–only has ground available but peaberry beans are still available in its ‘Supreme’ brand
Island Blue –beans are once again available in limited supplies