World may run out of coffee, chocolate, potatoes by 2055

DAILY SABAH
ISTANBUL
Published 27.09.2017 19:45
Updated 27.09.2017 19:46
World may run out of coffee, chocolate, potatoes by 2055

A recent study has linked global warming to depleting food sources as scientists claimed different species of potatoes, coffee and cacao plants faced the risk of extinction due to rising temperatures.

Up to 22 percent of wild potato species were predicted to become extinct by 2055 due to climate change and misuse of pesticide. In Ghana and Ivory Coast, where the raw ingredient for 70 percent of world's chocolate is grown, cacao trees will not be able to survive as temperatures rise by 2 degrees centigrade over the next 40 years, the study claimed.

Bioversity International, a group of expert scientists, has said that the "sixth mass extinction" was already under way and a total of 940 animal and plant species were facing extinction worldwide.

"Huge proportions of plant and animal species that form the foundation of our food supply are just as endangered [as wildlife] and are getting almost no attention," Ann Tutwiler, director general of Bioversity International, wrote in an article for the British daily Guardian.

Cacao trees only grow in certain countries and they can easily be affected by diseases. Moreover, due to unexpected weather conditions this year, the cacao harvest in Ivory Coast and Jamaica were reportedly low.

Cacao and potatoes might be the first food crops to be affected by global warming.

Meanwhile, about 33 percent of the world's farmland was estimated to be degraded, lacking the nutrients essential for growing crops.

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