Say Goodbye To Starbucks: Global Warming Will Halt 80 Percent Of Countries' Coffee Production By 2050

By Samantha Finch, Parent Herald May 13, 01:53 am

That cup of coffee you got from a Starbucks joint is in danger. A new report found that majority of the countries that produce coffee beans will halt their operations a few decades from now, and global warming is the culprit.

According to the International Center for Tropical Agriculture, 80 percent of lands in Brazil and Central America will be unstable for the farming of Arabica by 2050, MIT Technology Review reported. Arabica is the most popular variety of coffee and accounts for majority of the coffee consumed globally.

A 50-percent decline in the global production of coffee is also expected by 2050, the report stated. Experts have predicted that consumers will see price hikes and lesser quantity.

Change In Business Plans

By that time, coffee buyers will likely resort to building a new list of suppliers and form new supply routes, MIT Technology Review further reported. This process is not just complex, but also expensive.

Over 50 countries are active in coffee farming including Brazil, Indonesia, Tanzania and Vietnam. Most of these nations experience global warming that decreases coffee output in farms.

Severely damaged crops are the result of leaf rust and dangerous plant diseases. In 2014, coffee farms in Chiapas, Mexico lost 60 percent of their output thanks to rising average temperatures.

Vietnam is seeing a 30 percent decrease in its production of robusta and Arabica coffee beans, the Wall Street Journal reported. The El Niño-related drought in the country damaged almost 250,000 acres of coffee trees, with the Central Highlands as the hardest hit area.

Starbucks Prepares

Starbucks, a famous coffee seller around the world, has come up with measures to combat the looming problem. The company is working alongside farmers to successfully produce coffee despite the warm climate. That includes growing coffee beans that abide by a fixed set of standards like using shade, tree conservation to safeguard crops and controlling risks from pests and disease.

Starbucks said 99 percent of its coffee is currently complying with those standards. Its own coffee farm in Costa Rica—bought in 2013—was transformed into a laboratory for testing coffee-growing methods and experimenting on plants to make it stronger against warmer temperatures.

The company also offers better financial support and advice to coffee farmers when a difficult farming environment presents itself. This way, the workers' productivity is increased.

Starbucks efforts may have produced positive outcomes, but it failed in some ways. A type of coffee it developed in Costa Rica is resilient to fungal infestation, but its growth is slow and it yields poorly.

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