Coffee prices at the weekly Nairobi auction improved marginally as quality coffee from central Kenya started trickling in the market.
Market report from Nairobi Coffee Exchange (NCE) shows a 50-kilogramme bag on average traded at Sh19,879 up from Sh19,467 recorded previous Tuesday.
According to NCE, the prices will firm in the coming sales as more of quality beans from Mount Kenya enters the market.
The auction has been experiencing a shortage of good quality crop in recent days forcing the trading to be suspended to accumulate enough crop to sustain the next sale.
“We expect the prices to improve significantly once we start getting more of the quality coffee from central Kenya in the coming sales,” said Daniel Mbithi, chief executive officer NCE.
The crop from the region had been slowed by bad weather that saw coffee take long to dry before milling.
The drought witnessed in the first quarter this year helped to boost the earnings by 10 per cent as at the end of August 2017 following a shortage.
The NCE in a report said the crop earned Kenya Sh15.3 billion in the year ending August compared with Sh13.9 billion realised in corresponding period in 2016.
About 85 per cent of the Kenyan coffee is sold through the auction with the balance sold direct to overseas buyers.
The government has been pushing for direct sales to enable growers earn much from their crop by eliminating the middlemen who exploit farmers.