Chocolate Expected To Be Extinct By 2050

Some scientists are saying that chocolate might disappear by 2050, and they’re working out how to save the treat. Chocolate better not be going away!

By nowproducerdave on January 3, 2018
(Photo by Justin Sullivan/Getty Images)

Scientists are starting to worry (and us too) that the cacao plant will start disappearing and becoming extinct sometime after the year 2050. They say that it’s pretty much due to warmer temperatures, and a lack of rain.

The cacao tree is what produces the “pods” that hold cocoa beans, and is the start of the process for how we get chocolate. That’s “long story short.” The trees grow in rainforest climates, usually on farms, and are very difficult to maintain, since most (if not all) of the crop is usually lost to disease after several years. They’re saying that as temperatures rise, the crops would have to move up in elevation by about 1,000 feet to survive, but that just isn’t practical since land in those climates either isn’t there at all at that elevation, too rocky, or is already used for another purpose (like wildlife preserve, etc).

Anyway, University of California scientists are working with Mars (the candy company) in effort to save the plants. The trees require a very specific climate to grow, and scientists hope that they can “engineer” a new plant, genetically, that can survive in different climates. This will also make the plants less expensive and “more reliable.” We read that as “less expensive chocolate,” but let’s not get ahead of ourselves. Mars pledged $1 billion to go towards a program called “Sustainability in a Generation,” and they’re working to reduce their carbon footprint by about 60 percent by the time 2050 gets here.

Chocolate is a great little “snack” for most of us, but how would you feel about it being genetically modified? Just another one on the shelf in the store, or will that turn you off to the treat? Or does this sound like a convenient grab for attention and advertisement for Mars candy company?


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