A new study found that beer producers may need to raise the price of beer, since over the next 80 years, barley – a key ingredient in beer – may well be clipped by growing bouts of extreme heat waves and drought.

In fact, this study published in the peer-reviewed British journal Nature Plants noted that losses of barley yield may exceed 17 percent.

Researchers in China, along with Steven J. Davis, an environmental scientist at the University of California, Irvine, used models of both economic activity and climate change on 34 regions around the world to show barley may well become a scarce commodity, with farmers preferring to feed it to their livestock, rather than divert it to domestic breweries.

“That,” said Davis, “makes sense. This is a luxury commodity and it’s more important to have food on the table.”

Prices for beer will rise the highest in Poland (at 377 percent), with Ireland paying an increase of $4.84, followed by $4.52 in Italy and $4.34 in Canada. The Czech Republic, China and Belgium will pay double for their kegs, with Britain opening a quarter fewer bottles. Germany’s beer production would fall between 9% and 13%,  while Australia, with its compatible environment will only see a 7 percent drop.

American beer drinkers may well dole out an extra $1.94 for their six-packs, drafts, kegs, cans and bottles a year. Beer shortages will leave us with about 9 billion fewer bottles of beer.

“Future climate and pricing conditions could put beer out of reach for hundreds of millions of people around the world,” said study co-author Nathan Mueller of the University of California-Irvine.

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One scientist who reviewed the study before it was published, quipped “I hope Donald Trump loves beer. If he does he may return the US to the Paris agreement.”

 

Source:

Wei Xie, Wei Xiong, Jie Pan, Tariq Ali, Qi Cui, Dabo Guan, Jing Meng, Nathaniel D. Mueller, Erda Lin & Steven J. Davis. (2018). Decreases in global beer supply due to extreme drought and heat. Nature Plants