THE AMERICAS: Coffee Cause & Effect

Behind the lower U.S. price of a can of drip grind or a jar of instant lies a revolutionary new Brazilian coffee policy. For years Brazil operated as though it grew all the coffee in the world, refused to sell for less than its own pegged price, watched its markets and export income dwindle. Last year Brazil pulled out the peg, let prices seek their level, began selling hard. By August, coffee sales were setting records, and by last week the first two major effects could be plainly measured.

Meeting in Washington, representatives...

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