Ladies & Gentlemen, its time to give you a little bit more insight in to the Political tension and subsequent civil war and what this means for Ethiopian coffee harvest and supply for 2022 coffee season.
The conflict has fanned tensions among Ethiopia’s 80-plus ethnic groups and taken a frightful human toll.
We have received this report from our green coffee trader David and I am going to share with you the exact information coming out of Ethiopia.
Update on Situation in Ethiopia 8th November 2021.
The political situation in Ethiopia is worsening. The prime minister proposed a state of emergency last week, and it is likely to be ratified soon. The war in the North with the Tigrayan People’s Liveration Front (TPLF) has intensified, and the TPLF have moved south into the Amhara region in recent weeks, taking several key towns there. The TPLF is now about 380km north of the capital Addis Abeba.
The Prime Minister had called on all Ethiopians to take up arms to fight and push back the TPLF in the north. There have been a lot of casualties on both sides. In addition the Oromiya Liberation Front (OLF) is fighting the government, and pushing north from the Wollega/Lekempti area in the Southwest. An off-shoot group from the OLF cut off the road from Wollega/Lekempti to Addis last week.
The TPLF and OLF have started to work together to fight against the regime.
Currently the road and rail links to the East from Addis to Djibouti are still secure and coffee is still able to move freely. The current situation is not yet hindering coffee flows, but the potential for it to do so is clear as the new crop gets underway.
The crop is about 1 month later than usual this year. It is 40 % harvested in the Bench Maji lowlands, but only 10-15% harvested in Limu/Djimmah and Lekempti. In the south, the crop is only just starting – about 5% harvested – in Sidamo/Yirgacheffe, and even later in Guji.
In terms of volume, we expect a higher crop in Limu/Djimmah (20% above last year), and a lower crop in the south (15-20% lower in Sidamo/Yirgacheffe, and 5-10% lower in Guji).
Cherry prices have risen from 30 to 40 Birr per kg in Sidamo in the last 10 days, and remain at around Birr 30/kg in Limu.
This means a 25% increase in farmgate coffee prices per kg of cherry from the Sidamo region where we buy the majority of our Ethiopian coffee. This will have subsequent flow-on effects in Ethiopian coffee prices around the world including here in Australia.
I am monitoring this situation carefully with David and we are making our forecasts of Premium Ethiopian coffee and we are working hard to ensure that these bad news don't negatively impact our quality blends and their affordability.
The good news is we have already secured at least the next 6 months of quality Ethiopian coffees for you to enjoy.
Events like these truly make you appreciate your morning cup of coffee and never taking it for granted again.
Mikro Coffee Roasters