Addressing media, he said that the infestation at 20 to 30 per cent in tradition coffee growing plantations, and higher at 40 to 70 per cent in endemic areas, was however very low at higher elevations.
The `un-remunerative prices' fetched by coffee was not helping the growers meet the repayments of interests on loans availed, he added. The coffee producing countries the world over was facing similar situations, he added.
The Coffee Board has projected a total production of 2,75225 tonnes of coffee including 1,06500 tonnes of Arabica and 1,63525 tonnes of Robusta during the current year. For the previous year, the production was 2,75275 tonnes, comprising 1,02125 tonnes of Arabica and 73150 tonnes of Robusta.
India exported 2,06854 tonnes of coffee during the past year, at a total value of Rs 1048.20 crore compared to 2,13586 tonnes in the year 2001-02 at a value of Rs 1015.37 crore. For the current year the permits issued were 197335 as compared to 193011 in the last year.
The global cofee market is around $58 billion in which growers have a share of less than $10 billion.
Urging the Centre to promote domestic consumption of coffee, Mr Philip said that the per capita consumption of coffee in India was at an abysmally low figure of 50 gm.