Is Brazil the only country that is facing the challenges of not producing high quality coffee beans?
Brazil is not the only country that is struggling with coffee production. As a matter of fact, the declining supply of popular coffee beans, Arabica and Robusta are grown in many regions like Central Africa, Latin America, Indonesia. According to Peter Läderach a tropical agriculture expert, about 70 countries will suffer from the escalation of temperature, change in weather patterns, the rise of insects and diseases. At this point globally, the changing is weather conditions has made a negative impact for agriculture. It is happening rapidly in many parts of the world that contributes to the mass production of coffee beans. The cause of climate change will eliminate the population coffee crops leading towards the extinction of Arabica coffee beans. In the article, “Climate Change Threatens Your Cup of Coffee…” reported, “ Brazil, Guatemala, Tanzania and Vietnam are already suffering from climate change impacts, and are expected to experience changes in the suitability of their coffee cultivation areas.” As much as the changing in weather affects the production of coffee crops, it is also affecting those who are living in poverty.
How is the lack of coffee crops inclining the rate of poverty?
Due to the poor quality of coffee crops, many farmers are not able to export and make money off of coffee beans, which leads to an increase to the rate of poverty. Selling coffee beans is a way of life for many farmers and it is the only way to help raise money to support their families. According to the World Bank, 20 to 25 family farmers earn part of their income growing coffee. Most families are already digging themselves into poverty due to not having enough money for their kids’ education and for food. Major damages to coffee trees with exposure to more pesticides, which prevents families from making profit by exporting/selling coffee beans. In the article, “No magic bullet will solve international coffee crisis,” poverty has been going down dramatically - yet for those people connected to coffee, poverty increased by 2.4 percent, meanwhile poverty decreased by 15 percent for those with no connection to coffee. It is accurate that those who have access to coffee are less likely to be in poverty than those who don’t. The price of coffee is increasing due to the qualities of coffee, the deforestation rate is also increasing.
How does coffee production play a role in deforestation?
Due to the weather change, the coffee beans production is lacking, which leads to clearing more land in order to obtain coffee productivity. Producing high quality of coffee is almost impossible due to climate change; most lands are being dried up, which declines the coffee production. According to the article, “Future Demand and Climate Change,” Conservation International revealed, “Climate change have the potential to make coffee production a future driver of deforestation, which could threaten the last remaining intact tropical forests and the services.” Deforestation rate will double due to the demand of coffee production. Coffee producers may be the reason deforestation is happening even faster. “Coffee and its impact on People, Animals, and the Planet,” founded that 2.5 million acres of forest in Central America have been cleared to make way for coffee farming; 37 of the 50 countries in the world with the highest deforestation rates are also major coffee producers. If farmers are able to increase their productivity on existing coffee farms, deforestation rate will maintain the same.
Will coffee become extinct in the near future?
If people will not take precaution towards global warming, coffee lovers will have to say goodbye to their favorite caffeinated drink, coffee. According Emma Mills, “In 2012, Central America was hit by a wave of the fungus which caused a drop in production of around 2.7 million bags, affected 350,000 jobs and cost $500m.” This fungus is known as the hemileia vastatrix. Global warming is already happening and taking over Central America causing coffee production to decline rapidly. Due to this, farmers will not be able to take care of coffee trees that are infected causing coffee to become officially extinct. The most popular coffee tree could be leaving the Earth sooner than you think. In the article, “Wild Arabica coffee plants at risk of extinction,” it revealed that, climate change has creating a negative impact for the wild species of Arabica, which is the type of plant we used for most of our coffee production. As a result, Wild Arabica coffee plants may become extinct as soon as 2020. With this being said, climate change does not just affect farmers, but it affects the population as a whole who loves coffee. When the time comes coffee will become extinct, but there may be an alternative in replace of Wild Arabica coffee plants.
Is there an alternative for coffee drinkers if coffee becomes extinct?
It will be impossible to replace the distinctive taste of coffee, but there are options that are available that could potentially replace coffee when it becomes extinct. According to Dan Grossman, agronomists has been doing some research on other coffee species and they’ve mentioned how there are about 125 coffee species that are known to be able to survive in hotter weather. Although we tend to create our coffee drinks with Arabica and Robusta for delicious coffee flavors, other coffee plants could be a replacement of that. It may not contain the same flavors, but it would be a new flavor for coffee. Another alternative for coffee could be cocoa. From the article “Swapping Coffee for Chocolate,” cocoa could take place of coffee for production; “co-op is devoting 10pc of its Fairtrade premium, or around EUR 36,000 to develop cocoa production as an alternative to coffee...cocoa grows from 600m, meaning it should be a safer bet for the future.” Overall, if cocoa takes the place of coffee production it would be less stressful than to grow coffee beans, and farmers will make a profit through production.