[Homeroast] fear of coffee stockpiling as prices climb

Tom & Maria - Sweet Maria's Coffee sweetmarias at sweetmarias.com
Wed Sep 8 13:03:35 CDT 2010


Sorta interesting article. politicians are taking note! -Tom

Schumer wants warning against coffee stockpiling

By TOM MURPHY

Java drinkers rest easy. Sen. Charles Schumer has perked up to the 
spiraling cost of coffee beans, and he wants something done about it.

The New York Democrat has asked U.S. Trade Representative Ron Kirk to 
warn major coffee growers Brazil and Vietnam at an International 
Coffee Organization meeting later this month to not stockpile their 
crops, a move that could further boost bean prices that already have 
spiked this summer because of poor crops in some regions.

The fallout from rising prices has been brewing for months. Coffee 
futures spiked in June and have remained high. Coffee producers and 
sellers -- including Folgers and Dunkin' Donuts coffee maker J.M. 
Smucker Co. and the Wawa convenience store chain -- have already 
raised their prices. Starbucks Corp. has said it will absorb the 
higher cost.

Why the buzz? According to Schumer, the issue goes beyond bad crops. 
The senator said in a statement that Vietnam bought more than 60,000 
tons of its own coffee last spring and was considering a plan to 
stockpile up to 200,000 tons. Meanwhile, Brazilian growers have 
pressured their government to consider a similar move.

Schumer said coffee exporters are acting like "the OPEC of coffee," a 
reference to the Organization of Petroleum Exporting Countries, which 
has a large influence on oil prices.

"Play by the rules, that's all we're saying," Schumer said Monday 
afternoon in a phone interview.

The senator noted in a letter to Kirk that Brazil and Vietnam have 
accounted for about 45 percent of world coffee exports over the past 
10 years, and the United States is the world's largest coffee 
importer.

"If it was just weather, there's not much you can do, but it's beyond 
weather," he said in the interview. "It's people trying to manipulate 
the market. We want to stop that."

Kirk will review Schumer's request and discuss it with him, said 
Carol Guthrie, a spokeswoman for the U.S. Trade Representative.
-- 
-Tom

____________________________________________________________________________
"Great coffee comes from little roasters" - Sweet Maria's Home Coffee Roasting
               Thompson & Maria - http://www.sweetmarias.com
____________________________________________________________________________
     Sweet Maria's Coffee - 1115 21st Street, Oakland, CA 94607 - USA
             phone/fax: 888 876 5917 - info_at_sweetmarias.com



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