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Wednesday, 22 August, 2001, 13:48 GMT 14:48 UK
Brazil abandons coffee retention plan
The Brazilian Government says it will abandon a scheme under which most coffee producing countries agreed to retain 20% of their production in an effort to drive up prices.

In an interview with the Brazilian news agency Estado, the Agriculture Minister, Marcus Vinicius Pratini de Moraes, said the plan had failed because only Brazil and Colombia had played by the rules.

Brazil is the world's largest coffee producer and had retained more than 170,000 tonnes since the scheme was introduced last year.

The Brazilian minister criticised some Asian countries, especially the world's second largest producer, Vietnam, for selling all their production on the international markets and keeping coffee prices at a 30-year low.

From the newsroom of the BBC World Service

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