The Cocoa Crisis

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The Cocoa Crisis

Ryan M., Executive Editor

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40 years from now, the luxury of enjoying your favorite chocolate bar might be long gone. According to a recent report by two of the world’s largest chocolate makers, the gap between how much chocolate the world consumes and how much cocoa makers can produce is only growing, and we will start to see the great “chocolate extinction” by as soon as 2020.

Thanks to high demand coupled with warmer climates/dryer temperatures, chocolate is on track to be wiped completely from our lives by 2050.  Africa, which is the leading producer of the sweet treat and top grower of cocoa plants, is experiencing climate difficulties and having smaller crop yields, thus leading to the decrease in chocolate production.  But what does that mean for us?

As if the world doesn’t have enough to worry about between political tension and social fights, eliminating a comfort food might only add to the list of struggles going on in so many lives at the moment.   Imagine going into a cafeteria to find no chocolate chip cookies, or ordering a dessert off a menu with all vanilla options; culinary life as we know it would be completely different!  Junior Isabela Schmitt said “I love chocolate, and its something me and almost everyone I know have pretty often.  Chocolate is in everything, even in things that are not technically considered a ‘dessert’.  I can’t imagine a world without chocolate, because I feel like its already so integrated into our lives that I’d be hard to adapt without it.”

Chocolate, however delicious, has its unhealthy impacts; obesity, high blood pressure, diabetes, and other diseases can be caused by over consumption of chocolate.  The United States especially has high rates of obesity, leading to other problems that concern a person’s health.  Chocolate itself is one of the leading reasons for this, as it is so promoted at fast food establishments as well as grocery stores.   If the world no longer posed the temptation, we might see a decline in the percent of these diseases throughout the world.

Most high schools, including LMHS, have a wide variety of vending machines set up for students to choose from; if chocolate became extinct, the schools might have to develop healthier options to put in the now candy-filled machines.  Junior Emily Patel said “I think the extinction of chocolate will affect me a lot because most of the desserts and sweet treats I eat use chocolate!  For the school, they’re going to have to find something else to fill up the vending machines and replace the chocolate chip cookies with, and I think they are going to have some trouble doing that because its arguable that nothing is as good as chocolate.”

Chocolate is one of the biggest businesses in the world; the amount of manufacturing and profit that goes into your fun-size packs of m&ms is astonishing, and the extinction of chocolate will affect the majority of the world to say the least.  I mean, how can you deal with the awful news if the awful news is losing one of your best coping skills to deal with awful news?

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