Between too much moisture in Central America and too little in Brazil, coffee can’t catch a break.
By Dan Stone, National Geographic
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In Guatemala and throughout Central America, coffee infected with a fungus known as rust has reduced yields. Along the Equator where coffee grows best, the problem of yield is widely attributed to more extreme rainfall.
For nearly six years, a fungus that’s commonly known as rust has killed so many coffee trees in Central America that scientists have speculated the region could lose up to 40 percent of its coffee crop.
Now, as researchers scurry to maintain the global coffee supply, there are signs that climate change and wild weather could make the problem even worse.
“We just keep getting report after report at our partner institutions in those countries—these are growers, buyers, importers, and roasters,” says Tim Schilling, director of World Coffee Research at Texas A&M University, describing the problem in places like Panama and El Salvador.