Soft commodity

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A soft commodity (aka "the softs") is a commodity such as sugar, cocoa and coffee that is grown and not mined. Cotton, orange juice and grains are also sometimes referred to as "soft products."

ICE Futures US

The most active softs commodity markets in the U.S. in coffee, sugar and cocoa are offered for trading at ICE Futures U.S., formerly the New York Board of Trade.


At the New York Mercantile Exchange, soft commodities were listed with cash-settled contracts. Examples of commodity contracts include NYMEX cocoa (CJ), coffee (KT), cotton (TT), and sugar #11 (YO) futures contracts. These contracts are available for trading almost 24 hours a day on the CME's Globex® electronic trading platform. All NYMEX and COMEX clearing members may trade and clear these products.

NYMEX's cocoa futures have a trading unit of 10 metric tons and are quoted in U.S. dollars per metric ton with a minimum price increment of not less than $1.00 per metric ton. They trade with a March, May, July, September and December cycle for 23 months.

NYMEX's coffee futures have a trading unit of 37,500 pounds and are quoted in U.S. dollars per pounds. The minimum price fluctuation is $.0005 per pound. They trade with a March, May, July, September, and December cycle for the next 23 months.