Well it seems like Jamaica is running out of love for our liquid black gold in the Land of the Rising Sun aka Japan, well at least for the time being.
Since late 2009 the world has been undergoing a turbulent financial period and the East has not been excluded. While China has been seeing growth, it’s spritely partner and the major market for our Jamaica Blue Mountain coffee has been undergoing a recession. The latter has not been good news for our coffee farmers as they have had to ensure a steep decline in earnings, almost half, over the 8 month period to August 2010, down to US$17.4 million.
The Coffee Industry Board (CIB), it should be noted, has made attempts to diversify our clientele by engaging Starbucks in a minor promotion last year and has sought out China as a potential market, let’s see how coffee stacks up against tea.
Jamaican coffee, by the way sells for five times above coffee commodity prices, but is still not the priciest in the world. Actually, it’s coffee that is partly digested and then excreted by the Common palm civet, a weasel-like animal from Indonesia that is the most expensive. Kopi luwak coffee beans can cost up to $600 a pound, and up to $50 per cup, perhaps we ought to employ some goats in the Blue Mountains.
The Head of the East Japan Coffee Roasters Association (EJCRA), Shuhei Suzuki is on a Jamaican tour with a group of 20 other Japanese roasters and café owners, with the main intent of boosting revenues in Japan by validating the cost of Blue Mountain Coffee based on its micro-climate and production processes.
At the moment, The Mavis Bank Coffee Factory (MBCF), in which the Jamaican Government has majority stake is currently divesting its share with deadlines extended until March. The process is to be handled by the Development Bank of Jamaica. In an attempt to modernise its plant, the MBCF is also in the final stages of designing a $35 million waste water facility plan.
A LITTLE BIT ABOUT THE BLUE MOUNTAIN COFFEE PROCESS