Uganda’s coffee exports fell 20% in February compared to the same month a year ago, according to the state-run industry regulator, which blamed the drop on drought that reduced output in some parts of the nation.
The east African country shipped 448,957 60-kilogram bags in February, down 20% from the same month last year, according to a report released on Saturday by the Uganda Coffee Development Authority (UCDA).
Uganda is Africa’s largest coffee exporter, followed by Ethiopia, and earnings from the beans account for a significant portion of the country’s foreign exchange earnings.
The fall in exports, according to the UCDA, is primarily due to low robusta yields, Uganda’s primary coffee variety.
“The drop in robusta exports was primarily due to reduced yields this year, which were marked by drought in several areas,” according to UCDA.
Uganda announced its resignation from an International Coffee Organization (ICO) agreement last month, citing unfair tariffs and other restrictions that limit the sale of processed coffee to Europe and other markets.