How would coffee drinkers fare, should global warming destroy the world’s coffee crops? This is an unwanted, but harsh reality that Third Wave Coffee experts and coffee lovers around the globe may have to accept should things don’t change soon. The demand for coffee is on a steady rise, prompting the need for an increase in coffee production around the globe by an additional 40-60 million bags within the next ten decades. That’s a staggering amount which is more than the entire coffee crop produced in Brazil—the world’s top producer.
The major concern of those in the coffee industry currently is on how to maintain production in spite of changes in climate and not increase in production. One core factor that’s believed to be inhibiting the quantity of coffee production is the feeling of discouragement among coffee crop, farmers. This is so because, while farmers sell at fair prices to Third Wave Coffee Roasters, other coffee companies may offer much lower prices, which asides from discouraging farmers, may make it difficult for them to produce these coffee crops on a larger scale. This formed part of the major discussion recently in Milan, at the Global Coffee Forum by coffee producers, government officials, and industry representatives.
According to a recent statement by a Switzerland-based industry professional. The stated that in 2015-2016 season, the world was set to record deficit in the production of coffee in approximately 2.5 million bags.
Meanwhile, in the year before, coffee crop production recorded global deficit amounting to 6.4 million bags. This was as a result of a severe drought in 2014, affecting even Brazil’s most recent crop —driving Arabica futures in New York up by 50%. Prices have dropped by 27% since the start of 2015 due to the plunge in Brazil’s currency compared to the dollar—increasing the need to export from the country.
How we handle the potentially increasing deficit in coffee will be determined by time. It remains to be seen if Third Wave Coffee will grow more rapidly as a movement given the positive relationships the industry buyers form with their farmers, facilitating consistent crop production by the farmers.
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