Coffee and Tea Prices Rise at Weekly Auctions

A tea picker in Gathehu Village, Nyeri County. PHOTO | JOSEPH KANYI

Kenya’s agriculture commodities rallied last week to reverse the trend of falling prices in the previous sales at the auction.

The price of tea inched closer to a two-dollar mark in the weekly auction, with a kilo selling at Sh217 from Sh215 in the previous week even as the volumes offered for sale at the Mombasa Auction went up.

The price of the beverage had started the year on a high note but took a downward turn from mid-January. Despite the good price at the tea auction, the amount of the commodity withdrawn from the trading floor was higher than the previous sale.

According to East Africa Tea Traders Association (Eatta), 14 percent of the volume offered for sale at the auction last week was withdrawn, from 11 percent in the previous trading.

Eatta said however the quantities of tea offered for sale rose marginally by 163,000 kilos when compared with the previous trading.

“Out of 14 million kilogrammes available for sale, 12,080,098 Kilos were sold with 14.75 percent remaining unsold,” said Eatta.

Coffee prices also recorded an increase in the latest sale last week with a 50 kilo bag of the beverage trading at Sh34,430 from Sh33,990 the previous week.

Although coffee prices have oscillated since the beginning of this year, they have held above the $300 level for a 50 kilo bag since the beginning of the current crop year in October 2020.

Coffee earnings grew by 94 percent at the end of January to Sh5.2 billion compared to January 2020. NCE chief executive officer Daniel Mbithi said the improved earnings resulted from high demand of the Kenyan coffee and higher volumes of the produce at the auction.