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Coffee under threat

A shortage looms

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With demand outpacing production, some researchers estimate that there will be a shortage of 20 million to 30 million bags of coffee, or 1.2 million to 1.8 million tonnes, by 2020.

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While you may pay a pretty penny for your gourmet brew, the farmers see little of it. Most of the profits are earned by companies in the latter part of the coffee value chain; that is, the coffee trade houses, roasters and retailers who can adjust their prices more easily.

COFFEE lovers usually know exactly how they want their caffeine delivered, whether as a black kopi-O from the neighbourhood coffee shop, a sweet iced latte from Starbucks, or a hand-crafted speciality coffee from their favourite cafe. However, what they may not know is that their daily cuppas...

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