LONDON (Reuters) – The International Coffee Organization (ICO) sees the global coffee market flipping into a 1.95 million 60kg bag surplus in the 2019/20 season due to the impact of coronavirus lockdowns, having previously forecast a 474,000 tonne deficit.
“Many countries have suspended non-essential activities, which have negatively impacted out-of-home coffee consumption,” said the ICO in a monthly report on Tuesday.
“Additionally, job losses could lower demand, particularly for non-habitual consumers,” it added.
The group said its output forecast for 2019/20 is unchanged as much of the harvesting occurred before the coronavirus, but warned the pandemic might impact production in 2020/21.
Global production is seen down 1.8% in 2019/20 at 168.01 million bags, while consumption is seen up 0.5% at 166.06 million bags, the ICO said.
The group raised its estimate for a global surplus of 5.83 million bags in the prior 2018/19 season, from 1.89 million.
Reporting by Maytaal Angel; editing by Susan Fenton and Jason Neely