Like so many other life forms, the world of coffee is threatened by the increasing temperatures and irregular rain patterns that are a result of climate change. The varieties that produce the best tasting coffee have had difficulty adapting to the threat but a species in West Africa can grow in harsher conditions and tastes like the highly quality Arabica bean. This species is called Stenophylla. It is a rare wild plant that is heat and drought tolerant as well. It comes at the right time as scientists estimate that about 50% of areas where coffee currently is cultivated will be unable to grow the most popular plants.
Samples of the variety were tested in a side by side tasting with Arabica beans. Coffee tasting experts were thrilled by the flavor in the blind taste tests. Most of the tasters could not differentiate between Stenophylla and Arabica.
Along with the idea of having Stenophylla cultivated to grow in harsher conditions, some experts believe that moving the growing areas of the current popular beans would be a better solution. The third and best option would be to deal with the underlying threat of climate change. Adaptation should be the responsibility of the one species causing the threat to all others.