GUATEMALA CITY (Commodity Online) : Central America's leading coffee producer, Guatemala's production shortage in the 2009/10 cycle moved up prices for high-quality beans.

According to Guatemala coffee growers association, Anacafe, country's production for the cycle at 3.375 million 60 kg bags, down slightly from previous estimates of between 3.4 million and 3.6 million bags.

In the 2008/09 cycle, Guatemalan farmers produced 3.79 million bags of coffee.

Premiums for high-quality Arabica beans have soared as Colombia suffered a serious coffee shortage last year due to irregular rains and a tree replacement program. Central American growers have also seen smaller harvests.

Anacafe said major buyer Starbucks Corp stayed away from Guatemalan coffees in the current cycle.

Anacafe reduced his forecast for the 2010/11 harvest slightly to 3.68 million bags from 3.76 million bags earlier this month.