In a new find, researchers have claimed that land areas suitable for growing coffee, cash, and avocados will change dramatically as the earth heats up.
Important coffee regions in Brazil, Indonesia, Vietnam, and Colombia will all “drop dramatically” by about 50% by 2050.
Suitable locations for cashews and avocados will increase, but most will be away from current production areas.
The authors argue that great efforts must be made to help farmers get used to it.
Coffee is one of the world’s most important crops, not just as an important beverage but as a livelihood for millions of smallholder farmers. And as a result of consumer growth in rich countries, the demand for avocados and cashews has grown exponentially in recent decades.
Although the threat of climate change due to climate change has been well documented in recent years, there is little information about how rising temperatures will affect avocados and cashews.
In this study, the authors looked at how rising temperatures and changes in rainfall would affect three crops over the next 30 years. Researchers also, for the first time, included information about the earth and the characteristics of the soil.
Coffee is a crop that is highly susceptible to high temperatures. For those of the world’s leading Arabica producers – the most popular coffee varieties – the potential for growing this plant will drop by almost half by 2050 – a “significant” decline, according to the report.
Some key areas will see a more serious impact. At very low temperatures, there will be a 76% decrease in Brazil’s most suitable coffee grounds. In Colombia, it will drop by 63%.
Some regions in the northern and southern hemispheres of today’s growing areas will be more suitable, including Argentina, South Africa, China, and New Zealand among others.
But according to the authors, this does not mean that these new regions can easily change current sites. “An important message for those in the most productive regions today is that farming systems must adapt to changing conditions,” said lead author Roman Grüter, of Zurich University of Applied Sciences. “If coffee is already being grown in a new area where possible with other management options, it may be easier or more extended but that does not mean we will have the best coffee growing areas in 10 years or so.”
For cashews, the image is different. Overall, the most suitable areas for growing crops will increase by 17%.
However, in some countries currently relying on cashews as an important cash crop, the good news is. India is losing important fitness areas, while Benin is losing half of its fitness areas under a relatively low-temperature rise.
For avocados, the picture is difficult – especially in the most productive countries. Mexico, the world’s largest producer, sees an increase in the number of eligible countries, at more than 80%. However, Peru – another major producer – loses about half of its land area under the same climate.
Although rising temperatures and changes in rainfall patterns may make some areas more suitable, the authors are concerned that major changes in the development of these plants in new regions may see more forests being converted into farms or an increase in invasive species.