Saturday, 2 February 2019

In Brazil Heatwave, Coffee is Literally Burning on the Trees

After abundant rain in the second half of last year that boosted optimism for the crop, robusta-coffee areas in Espirito Santo got only 5 millimeters (0.2 inches) in January, trailing the 150-millimeter average for the month, according to Somar.

The main issue, though, is the scorching heat, with temperatures reaching as high as 37 degrees Celsius. Plants full of forming cherries have been getting as many as nine hours a day of temperatures above 30 degrees, Celso Oliveira, a meteorologist at Somar in Sao Paulo, said by telephone.

Espirito Santo and Bahia account for more than 80 percent of Brazil’s robusta-coffee crop. Southern Bahia state has been hardest hit.

"In Bahia, crop conditions are terrible as they don’t have irrigation to ease plant stress," Gabriel's Calegari said.


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