The effects of climate change on coffee growing regions could render the plant extinct by 2080, according to researchers from The Climate Institute.
Reportedly, climate change is already putting pressure on production from regions along the ‘bean belt’ as the global demand grows. Temperature rise and the increase of extreme weather events is projected to cut the growable area by 50 percent, erode coffee quality and increase prices for consumers.
“Companies such as Starbucks and Lavazza, as well as the International Coffee Organisation, have already publicly acknowledged the severity of climate risks,” said CEO of The Climate Institute, John Connor. “Consumers are likely to face supply shortages, impacts on flavour and aromas, and rising prices.”
Global coffee production has trebled in the last 50 years, but between 80 and 90 percent of the supply comes from coffee farming smallholders in countries that are among the most vulnerable to climate change, such as Ethiopia and Indonesia.
“Over 2.25 billion cups of coffee are consumed around the world every day,” said Connor. “Yet coffee is just one of a multitude of things increasingly subject to negative climate impacts, and its negative flow-on effects.”
Increases in temperature and rainfall in the vulnerable nations has already increased the incidence of disease and pests having a negative affect on yield and quality.
“Without strong climate action, the areas suitable for growing coffee could halve in a few decades, pushing production upslope, away from the equator and into conflict with other land uses, such as nature conservation and forestry,” said Connor. “By 2080 wild coffee, an important genetic resource for farmers, could be extinct.”