A study released this month by researchers at Britain’s Kew Gardens found that certain coffee crops were at risk for eradication by 2080 due to climate change. According to the study, farmers would have to continuously move crops in order to avoid changes in temperature that would kill particular types of coffee plants—most notably Arabica, which accounts for more than 70 percent of coffee beans on the market. Arabica is grown in several African countries, including Sudan and Ethiopia. The Kew study predicted that 65 percent of existing Arabica locations would be unable to grow the crops by 2080. London publication The Telegraph reported that for places in Sudan, this could happen by 2020.
The worst case scenario would render 100 percent of those locations unusable by 2080. The Telegraph article noted that new locations for growing Arabica were being sought.
Robusta, another type of coffee plant cultivated primarily in Greece and Turkey, is less sensitive to environmental changes, but is considered more bitter than Arabica and is therefore less popular among many Western coffee drinkers.