chocolate climate change

Say it ain’t so!

According to a new report from the International Center for Tropical Agriculture, the West African countries of Ghana and Côte d’Ivoire, where half of the world’s cocoa supply comes from, are becoming less and less suitable for cocoa production as climate change brings higher temperatures and changing rainfall patterns.

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Warmer conditions mean the heat-sensitive cocoa trees will struggle to get enough water during the growing season, curtailing the development of cocoa pods, containing the prized cocoa bean – the key ingredient in chocolate production. The trees are also expected to struggle as the region’s dry season becomes increasingly intense.

The report states that between 2030 and 2050, land area suitable for cocoa production will fall dramatically. While rising temperatures and changing rainfall pattern may shift cocoa production to land currently not suitable, the net impact to this $9 billion-per-year industry could be severe.

The Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation funded the report, which calls for increased research into heat and drought resistant crops and investments in improved irrigation systems.

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If you weren’t convinced already, now you know why we must act NOW and save our environment! Is a world without chocolate a world worth living in? Think about it, people.

Image Source: Gail/Flickr

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