Current coffee varieties were created for 20th century coffee sector. We already have significant evidence that they will not tolerate the environmental threats of the 21st century—changing weather patterns, increased temperatures, and new disease and insect prevalence. This creates a potentially disastrous decline in supply in the coming decades.
Building the next generation of coffee varieties and sustaining the industry’s genetic and breeding pools is a major, cross-cutting initiative too big for an individual institute to undertake, which is why a global organization like World Coffee Research must lead the effort.
In the coming years, together with our partners, we will:
All these programs are underpinned by the WCR Sensory program that ensures the highest cup quality through early generation and parental screening.
The coffee industry cannot single-handedly reverse climate change. Our best hope for sustaining the supply of high quality coffee in the 21st century is to focus on making the coffee plant more resilient. The creation of new, highly adaptable varieties, supported by a vibrant new seed sector, will result in major global productivity and quality gains in the next 10-20 years.