Heavy Rains in Brazil May Not Hamper Coffee Bean Production

Coffee prices hit a decade-high in December and are double what they were a year ago.

January 11, 2022

Coffee Cup

ALEXANDRIA, Va.—Heavy rain in Brazil has flooded coffee fields and other crops in the country, which could hurt coffee fields in some hard-hit areas but help in other areas, reports Reuters.

Regions north of Minas Gerais, the main coffee-producing area of Brazil, received more than four times the normal amount of rain, but unlike drought and frost the country received last year, the extra moisture could help improve conditions where the rain was less severe.

In some places, such as Taiobeiras, also in northern Minas Gerais, entire coffee fields were covered in water, so their entire harvests will be lost. But in other areas, including the main belt in South Minas Gerais, the extra rain will increase the coffee bean size, leading to farmers needing fewer beans to fill a bag. The beans will be of a higher quality, and therefore more sought after by roasters.

"People usually overstate damage by rain. It normally benefits more than harms," said commodities analyst Shawn Hackett to Reuters.

According to Macrotrends, the current price of coffee as of January 10, 2022, is $2.35 per pound, which is more than double the $1.25 per ounce it was around one year ago.

In December, Fortune reported that coffee prices rose to a decade high, fueled by a shipping crunch, a spike in demand and dry weather. Fortune does point out that there isn’t a direct relationship between the futures markets for coffee and how much you’ll be paying for your morning coffee.