Our Plot Project: How Zingerman’s Research Can Help Us Deal With Climate Change

The impacts of climate change on coffee production are undeniable. Research indicates that the areas suitable for growing coffee will be reduced by up to 50% by 2050.

In Brazil, the drier and hotter climate, caused not only by climate change but also by the deforestation of the Amazon and the Cerrado Region, is already reflected in Arabica coffee production in Minas Gerais and São Paulo.

Adapting to this new scenario means improving the way we produce coffee. Over the past few years, our best efforts have been invested in understanding agroforestry, shading techniques, and sustainable solutions for fertilizers.

Through Our Plot Project, Zingerman’s has been evaluating the Pacamara variety in full sun and areas shaded with African Mahogany (Khaya ivorensis). This is an ongoing project that has been happening at Daterra for almost 5 years now.

So far, we have noticed that the coffees in this plot are responding very well in the shaded areas. Productivity is higher, but, more than that, the life quality of the people working in the field increased a lot, since they don’t have to work under Cerrado’s extremely hot sun.

This is just one of the many examples of research that has been going on at Daterra, which can elucidate outcomes on how to deal with climate change in the best way possible.