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Facing the Reality of a World Without Chocolate

Hailey Mears, Reporter

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With recent headlines of articles and social media posts claiming a possible world without chocolate in the near future, people have become concerned.

Business Insider published an article that seemed to go viral with the headline, Chocolate is on Track to go Extinct in 40 Years. Since this is such an outrageous and unexpected claim for many, more articles have surfaced exploring the question further in hopes of uncovering some truth.

Climate change is the main culprit for depriving us of a key ingredient of chocolate. Cacao plants are victims of fungal disease and climate change. Fungal diseases have already posed a threat on cacao trees in Central America, but scientists are worried that these diseases could spread to other parts of the world affecting more of the cacao population.

A problem is the sensitivity of the cacao plants. They have very specific ideal living conditions. They prefer uniform temperatures, abundant rain, high humidity, nitrogen-rich soil, and no wind.

“Côte d’Ivoire, Ghana, and Indonesia are the leading producers of chocolate, but the two West African countries generate over half of the world’s chocolate,” said Bruce Y. Lee of Forbes,  “That leaves the world’s chocolate supply rather vulnerable to even small changes in climate. In fact, climate models predict that by the year 2050 a 3.8°F  or 2.1°C increase in temperatures and drier conditions will occur in these areas and may further shrink the possible growing areas.”

Although it is hard to say for sure if chocolate will become extinct, the most common idea is the effect of climate change on the cacao plants. With this idea, it is said to be gone in about 40 years. A lot can change in 40 years and new discoveries and technology are constantly being made. Hopefully something will be done to avoid a world without chocolate.

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Facing the Reality of a World Without Chocolate