Production of coffee in Indonesia is estimated to grow around 10 percent to the range of 650,000 - 700,000 tons in 2017, says the Indonesia Coffee Exporters Association (GAEKI). In 2015 Indonesia's coffee production is estimated to have fallen to 600,000 tons due to the impact of El Nino, a weather phenomenon that brought dry weather to Southeast Asia hence plaguing harvests of agricultural commodities. GAEKI Chairman Hutama Sugandhi added that Indonesia's coffee export performance also declined in 2016.
The provinces of Lampung, South Sumatra and Bengkulu (all on the island of Sumatra) are known as the key coffee growing areas of Indonesia, accounting for around 65 percent of Indonesia's total coffee output. Sugandhi said if this region will not be plagued by any disturbances, then chances are big that Indonesia's coffee production will grow in 2017.
Based on a recent GAEKI survey, expectations of harvests as well as the conditions of coffee plantations in this "golden triangle" on Sumatra are better this year compared to conditions in 2016, despite the heavy rainfall that occurred over the past three months. However, heavy rainfall will only form a problem if it occurs around the timing of flowering (which has already passed) or the time of harvesting (which is set to start in April), he added.
The golden triangle of Lampung, South Sumatra and Bengkulu mostly produces the lower quality robusta coffee beans. However, heavy rainfall does impact on the quality of the higher quality arabica beans, that is mostly produced in North Sumatra and Aceh, because flowering started in the January-February period when heavy rainfall touched its peak. Sugandhi could not mention any figures yet regarding the possibility of declining arabica production figures. Perhaps in May GAEKI can give an estimation. Arabica beans account for about 15 percent of Indonesia's total coffee bean production.
Read more: Overview of the Coffee Sector in Indonesia
Indonesia's Agriculture Ministry targets coffee production in Indonesia at 637,539 tons in 2017, below the estimated 639,300 tons of coffee that was produced in the preceding year. The government set a lower target because the size of coffee plantations in Indonesia has declined, while there remain coffee plantations that are not yet productive due to tree rejuvenation programs.