CLIMATE CHANGE THREATENS FOOD AND COFFEE SUPPLY
New research shows that our food supply and even coffee and chocolate are declining
Climate change and our impact on the environment are affecting temperatures, how much rain certain areas of the world receive, and how many pollinators survive in that environment.
Pollinators are insects and birds that fly from plant to plant, bringing pollen to fertilize them, which in turns produces fruits, including coffee. New research published today from the Harvard School of Public Health shows that our use of pesticides and the changing patterns in rain and climate are reducing the number of insects worldwide, and especially pollinators, with an enormous impact on food.
While food production is most impacted in poorer countries, it will be developed countries that will feel the harshest effects of this trend, due to the fact that most developed countries are importing from the Global South most of their food in the new, global economy.
Bees pollinating a coffee plant. This is how coffee beans are produced.
These trends have caught the eye of investors and experts, such as Sam Kass, formerly the White House chief chef. Mr. Kass is most worried about the coffee supply and how it will decline due to climate change, as recently reported by scientists.
Another favorite food threatened by climate change and large scale agribusiness practices is chocolate. Despite being less sensitive than coffee to temperature changes, the chocolate plant is being targeted by more pests, which are becoming stronger due the use of monocultures—large cultivations of a single plant—which in turn are fueled by an ever growing global demand.
Cacao plant, from which chocolate is produced.