India sets sights on US, Japan for boosting coffee exports

India sets sights on US, Japan for boosting coffee exports

New Delhi: A spurt in output has encouraged Indian coffee exporters to look beyond traditional markets to the US, the world’s largest consumer of the beverage, as well as Japan, according to Coffee Board chairman Jawaaid Akhtar.

“Italy, Germany and Russia are our large export markets. However, we are working on to boost exports to markets with huge potential like US and Japan. We can supply more to these countries," Akhtar told PTI.

He was quick to add that laying more emphasis on the US and Japanese markets does not anyway mean the board will neglect traditional markets.

According to Coffee Board estimates, production in India during the year is likely to go up to 3.08 lakh tonnes from 2.89 lakh tonnes last year. Since India exports 70% of its coffee output, higher production will enable a spurt in overseas shipments.

India, the largest coffee exporter in Asia, exported 1.96 lakh tonnes of coffee in the 2008-09 fiscal, of which exports to the US and Japan accounted for just 0.99% and 0.85%, respectively, of the total shipments.

Shipments to Italy, Germany and Russia constituted 41% of India’s total exports during the year.

India exported 2.04 lakh tonnes coffee in 2009-10. However, destination-wise export figures were not available.

Akhtar said that as part of promotional activities in the US and Japan market, India had participated in two trade fairs in each of the countries in the current year to forge better relationships with local importers and traders.

Asked about the quantum of exports India can expect to make to these two countries during the current year, the Coffee Board chairman said, “It’s not about quantity. The US is the world’s largest coffee consuming nation. They consume more than our entire output in a year. Japan has also a good market. So our motive will be exporting as much as possible."