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Cocoa to disappear in 40 years if climate change 'runs rampant'

Cocoa to disappear in 40 years if climate change 'runs rampant'
Source: Ghana| | Adelaide Arthur | Stockholm, Sweden
Date: 13-06-2018 Time: 01:06:51:pm

The Convener of Mission 2020, a global initiative pushing for urgent action on climate change, Christiana Figueres, has warned that cocoa is likely to disappear in the next four decades if global warming continues to be a big problem.

Farmers in cocoa growing countries such as Ghana may not be able to cultivate the important crop if urgent action is not taken to mitigate the effects of climate change.

"The cocoa industry is quite clear that if climate change runs rampant, there is a danger of us not having any cocoa being able to be produced in forty years," Figueres told journalists at the 2018 EAT Stockholm Food Forum.

Christiana Figueres, who shared insight into how food and climate change are linked also noted two ways the impending threat can be reversed.

Christina Figueres - Convener Mission 2020 @ Photo credit: EAT SFF/Johan Lygrell

"One way to solve that is to eat as much chocolate you can now. The other way to solve that is actually to bring...all the different players, up and down the value chain, to figure out what changes need to be made in order for cocoa to become sustainable."

Climate change, sustainable food production and food waste headlined discussions at the EAT Stockholm Food Forum, which brought together more than 600 scientists, researchers, politicians, entrepreneurs, chefs and civil society organisations from over 50 countries.

For two days, delegates discussed how best to transform the food system in order to make healthy food available to all while protecting the environment.

The experts agreed that the world, especially developing countries, should see a reduction in cases of hunger and malnutrition if an aggressive agenda is pursued to sanitise how food is produced, prepared and consumed.

The Swedish Deputy Prime Minister and Minister for International Development Cooperation and Climate Isabella Lövin also tasked people living on the planet to be responsible for it.    

"...the spaceship earth where we are not the passengers; we are the crew.  So humankind has really [the] responsibility to maintain and make this spacecraft earth work for future generations."

Isabella Lövin - Swedish Deputy PM @ Photo credit: EAT SFF/Johan Lygrell

With the world population expected to surpass nine billion by 2050, the critical question has been how to feed the teeming number of people in the world with limited land and dwindling fish stock.

Research also indicates that food production contributes significantly to global environmental degradation and climate change.

EAT, a global non-profit start-up says it is engaging partners to deliver science-based solutions that ensure food is produced, processed, distributed and consumed in a healthy and environmentally friendly way. 

"EAT collaboration with World Business Council for Sustainable Development where some 40 of the biggest global brands, mostly in the food space, are working to develop business solutions based on the EAT Lancet Commission framework, trying to really be on the forefront of change," EAT Founder and Executive Chair, Dr Dunhild A. Stordalen said.

Dr Gunhild Stordalen - Founder and Executive Chair EAT @Photo credit: EAT SFF/Johan Lygrell

She added that developing corporate benchmarks to measure contributions to the Sustainable Development Goals will put "more pressure on industry to step up and change".

The EAT-Lancet Commission on Food, Planet, Health is expected to release a report on healthy diets from sustainable food systems later this year.





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