By Patricia Bianca S. Taculao
More than half the world’s coffee species are in danger of going extinct. Papers published in Science Advances and Global Change Biology revealed that 75 of Earth’s wild coffee species are facing extinction.
Popular beans such as Arabica and Robusta, which are widely used in different blends, are some of the types among the 124 wild coffee species that are at risk. According to the team behind the Global Change Biology study discovered that the population of arabica, which is a native Ethiopian species, could fall by around 50 percent by 2088.
The main threat to coffee crops is climate change. Most coffee crops, like arabica, requires a year-round temperature of 59 to 75 degrees Fahrenheit with a distinct rainy and dry seasons to grow properly.
Coffee farmers are then forced to innovate through various methods like moving crops to higher, cooler ground. This may not be effective in other areas where coffee cultivation takes up a great deal of land.
Wild coffee species have the possibility to be preserved in seed banks or nationally protected forests, while commercial coffee can undergo genetic interbreeding.
Fortunately, the caffeinated drink isn’t completely out of the market. Researchers are focused on conservation through maintaining genetic diversity and sustaining species in their native environments rather than relying solely in collections like seed banks.
Still, there’s no harm in stocking up on your favorite morning drink.