Brazil Coffee Areas Hit by Freezing TemperaturesJuly 20: Frost forms in Brazil's Coffee Belt
For the second time this month, Brazil was hit by a cold snap. The mercury dropped to surprisingly cold temperatures in key areas of Minas Gerais and Sao Paulo with some below freezing for several hours. Frost forms at 2C or below... (read more)
Boots on the Ground in BrazilFresh off the tree, these Arabica cherries were hand-picked at a beautiful farm in Alfenas that is steeped in family tradition. This year's harvest has a higher percentage of cherries where the grain inside (coffee beans) are not properly developed or fully formed. The coffee is lighter in weight and the beans are smaller due to the reduced precipitation. They are estimating about a 10% break in the crop size when milling from prior expectations. After the coffee is millled and dried it is kept in sealed wooden slats to rest for 60 days at this farm. The norm is about 30 days.
Boots on the ground in BrazilEvidence of premature flowering from recent rain in Campo de Meio, Minas Gerais Judy has been discussing evidence of flowering that could impact the 2022/23 crop as well as some early budding. Farmers are hoping that there is no rain in the next two months so as not to spur a large premature flowering that would be at risk if there was no follow-on rains, but also create a problem since most farms use mechanical harvesting and the crop would be too early. Leaves are also starting to grow at the nodes, a signal that the trees have been under extreme stress.
Boots on the ground in BrazilOn most farms I observed premature budding and leaves forming on trees at the nodes due to the recent irregular rains of varied amounts. This is only the start of the dry season. The timing of next rainfall will be critical. If it rains again and there is a lack of follow-on rains the blossoming will be lost, similar to the problem that happened in October. The buds could also bake in the hot sun and turn black. There are some buds already with a black tip, which shows the flowering that had occurred aborted, representing a loss to the 2022/23 crop.
Brazil’s Frost May Kill Young Coffee Trees, Hurt Crops for Years
The death of young trees increases the likelihood that the crops even two years from now will be compromised, according to Judy Ganes, a consultant who has covered the market for more than three decades. Farmers will have trim off damage, destroying yields, or replant their fields. (Link to full story here)
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