• QA 037
    When does a "crop year" start?
    What month does the crop year start with and do crop years differ between countries?
    Asked by:
    Trader - Japan

    Coffee is a seasonal crop and seasons vary from country to country, starting and finishing at different times throughout the year. Any single 12- month period may encompass a whole crop year in one country, but may include the end part of the previous year's crop and the beginning of next year's crop in another. Some coffee producing countries have a single harvest season but others have two, usually known as early and main crop. Harvest times are linked to flowering and flowering in turn is linked to rainfall patterns.

    The International Coffee Organization (ICO) groups producing countries into three distinct "crop years" depending on when coffee is harvested and becomes available: 

    • October 1 to September 30:  31 countries including Colombia and Vietnam;
    • April 1 to March 31             :  13 countries including Brazil;
    • July 1 to June 30                    :    7 countries;

    The ICO then further translates coffee availability into export patterns in individual countries on a quarterly basis within the different crop years. This makes it easier both to project supply and to adapt statistics generally to the formal "coffee year" which runs from October 1 to September 30.

    See Section 01.02.04 for the list of coffee producing countries by crop year. See Section 01.05.04 for a breakdown of estimated crop availability for export by quarter as a percentage of the harvest.

    Posted 20 August 2005.

    Related chapter(s):
    Related Q & A: