Source: The Financial Times
"As climate conditions become critical, millions of farmers’ livelihoods are put at risk"
Climate change poses a serious threat to the world’s coffee “bean belt” and the 60-plus countries that produce the commodity. With 21.5m people involved in coffee farming, says the International Coffee Organization, 85 per cent of output is produced by smallholders.
“We know just how vulnerable farmers are to losing their crops as a result of climate change,” says Anna Pierides, coffee supply chain manager at the non-profit Fairtrade Foundation.
Compared with 10 years ago “people are really starting to see the impact,” says Aaron Davis, senior research leader at Kew’s royal botanic gardens in London. “It is the most serious concern for the coffee industry.”
Arabica coffee — 60 per cent of global output — grows in tropical highlands and performs best at an average temperature of 18C-21C. Lower-grade robusta — largely for the instant-coffee market — grows in low-lying regions.