We have witnessed change throughout time include the growth and withering of many things. Much like the disappearance of the dinosaurs, there are food items that are gradually declining and will soon disappear thanks to the climate change. Here is a list of 5 food items that might not be around for very long.
- Coffee: Coffee is one of the most consumed items worldwide. It is not uncommon to hear that coffee growth is declining each year. The areas where coffee is grown are being hit hard by the effects of climate change—the rising temperatures as well as intense rainfalls threaten coffee growing regions. It won’t be long before we will start looking for an easier alternative to stay awake at night or at work.
- Chocolate: The increase in temperatures and humidity might not affect our favorite guilty pleasure, since the cocoa trees thrive in hot, humid regions but they are certainly not aided by the lack of rainfall. Most of the cocoa trees grow in the areas around the equatorial region which doesn’t see much rainfall resulting in loss of moisture. This pushes chocolates slowly but surely in the endangered list.
- Beer: Hold on to those hats, because this isn’t pretty news for beer-enthusiasts. Beer is one of the most consumed beverages ever and thanks to the climate change it too is on the endangered list. Due to the rapid growth in temperature, brewers are finding it hard to secure stable water supplies. In the context of our country, we already know the issues with water supplies. The warming winters also directly affect the low yield in product quicker. So you might not be able to enjoy a cold pint of beer in the future.
- Apples: This doesn’t come as much of a surprise, going by how different apples taste from the ones a decade ago. It wouldn’t be a tough guess to place that the temperature affects these too. Apples are temperate fruits, which need a certain period of winter chill to produce good yields, could be affected by global warming as winter temperatures are rising. There can be alternative ways to grow apples but they wouldn’t taste the same and since rising temperatures cause apple trees to bear fruit sooner, it makes them softer and sweeter. For some, that might just work out but it comes down to how different the taste will be compared to now or even past harvests. Hmm… might not be long before the only Apple we know will be the iPhone manufacturers.
- French Fries/Potatoes: Everyone likes French fries. No, wait! Everyone LOVE French fries. This one could actually bring a tear in your eye because the evil climate change and global warming are factoring in the gradual decline in potato harvests. We may even need to think about a different side to go with basically everything. This may not be very soon but possibly within the next 2 or 3 decades, potato harvesting will be at their minimum. The harvesting will be an all time low because there might not be a suitable environment to plant potatoes in the first place.Of course, French fries aren’t the only good thing that we get from potatoes. Think of all the potato chips, baked potatoes, hash browns and mashed potatoes we might not get to savor. Here in Nepal, think of all the aloo-chops we will lose! Potatoes are the world’s third most important crops after rice and wheat and more than a billion people worldwide consume them. Today the global total potato production exceeds 300 million metric tons. Within a few decades the world might be losing one of the most delicious staples and if that isn’t a tragedy, then what is?
Food may be one of the most immediate ways many of us will feel the effects of climate change. It might not be the end of the world but it will be a big enough deal to be worth our concern.