For International Coffee Day the Rainforest Alliance produced this infographic charting coffee's history, sustainable production, health benefits, commodity power, and the risks coffee faces as global temperatures rise.
Coffee is under threat from extreme weather and pests mean the highland bean is running out of cool mountainsides on which it flourishes. Passle’s Rachel James posted a Kew Gardens' video of how rising temperatures are endangering our morning coffee.
This year the IPCC, the climate science authority, reported that in Brazil, the world's biggest coffee producer, a temperature rise of 3 degrees Celsius would slash the area suitable for coffee production by two-thirds in the principal growing states of Minas Gerais and São Paulo and eliminate it in others. While growing will become possible in states further south, this will not compensate for losses further north. A previous IPCC report on the science of climate change published projected the world will warm by 2.6-4.8C by the end of the century without deep cuts in greenhouse gas emissions.
Coffee production sustains the livelihoods of some 100 million people. Growing coffee sustainably under shade and protecting water resources are just two of the many ways the Rainforest Alliance is sustaining the world’s coffee production and thus maintaining the world’s coffee addiction.
Global warming is leading to bad, expensive coffee. Almost 2bn cups of coffee perk up its drinkers every day, but a perfect storm of rising heat, extreme weather and ferocious pests mean the highland bean is running out of cool mountainsides on which it flourishes. The International Coffee Organisation is equally worried: "Climate change is the biggest threat to the industry. If we don't prepare ourselves we are heading for a big disaster." Coffee drinkers may see the effect in their cups, but the 25m rural households around the globe whose livelihoods depend on coffee will be hit far harder.