Brazil has again sharply increased, the export price of coffee, claiming that the rise is necessary to keep the cost to Brazilian consumers low enough for them to afford it, Washington Post special correspondent Bruce Handler reported.
The increased were decreed yesterday at Brazilian newspapers were carrying on their front pages President Carter's advice on his national radio interview to a caller complaining about coffee prices that people could "drink less coffee as the price goes up."
Effective Monday the minimum price at which Brazil will permit coffee to be exported will go up 70 cents a pound to $2.80. The new export price, in shipping costs, added, could push the retail price of coffee in the United States toward the much talked-about price of $5 a pound.
Brazil expects record profits this year from coffee exports.
The government here uses some of the export tax money to subsidize the internal market.
The current high price of coffee is due to a drastic world shortage that was caused by an unusual combination of bad weather, natural disaster and political upheaval in major coffee-producing countries.
The domestic price of $1.58 is more than 50 per cent higher than it was a year ago.