It seems that as the world’s temperature heats up, more of the world may be forced to go gluten-free.
On the contrary, climate experts and agricultural scientists have long warned that climate change will likely wreak havoc on the global food supply. A new study appears to offer some of the most convincing evidence to date on the serious effect global warming could have on one of the world’s most important crops, wheat.
More than 50 scientists based around the world — from China to the EU to the US — participated in the research, the results of which were published this week in the journal Nature Climate Change. The team found that an increase of 1 degree Celsius in global temperature would cause worldwide wheat production to fall between 4 per cent and almost 6.5 per cent. The Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change, the leading international scientific body on the issue of global warming, predicts global temperatures to rise between 2 and 6 degrees Celsius by the end of the century.
All told, worldwide wheat production hit nearly 735 million metric tons last year, a record high that the 2016–17 harvest is expected to surpass. A loss of 4 per cent — on the conservative end of the estimate — would equate to 30 million metric tons of wheat, while the 13 per cent decline that might occur if global temperatures rise by 2 degrees Celsius would equate to a staggering 95 million metric tons. That's well over three times Australia's annual wheat harvest, and almost double the entire current output of the United States. Such losses are not the direction we need to be going, especially given that the world population is expected to hit 9 billion by the middle of this century, spiking global food demand by 60 per cent, according to the United Nations.
Adding insult to the injury that is already the general social injustice of climate change: The study predicts that countries in warmer regions will experience a more significant drop in wheat production, while those in cooler regions will fare better. Warmer, often poorer countries with lower emissions have long complained that they bear more of the burden of climate change than wealthier, heavier-polluting countries. The current study predicts, for instance, that an increase of 1 degree Celsius would mean a 3 per cent decrease in wheat yields in China and an 8 per cent decrease in India.
What’s the silver lining in all this? Not much for the layperson warily eyeing rising sea levels and worrying about the future of bread. But for the scientists involved, the study represented something of a breakthrough in that it employed three separate methods — two model simulations and a rigorous statistical analysis — all of which produced essentially the same results.
“This means we’re closer to more precisely predicting crop yields and their response to climate change worldwide, but we have shown this only for wheat so far,” Senthold Asseng, a professor of agricultural and biological engineering at the University of Florida and a lead author of the study, said. “It’s the first time that a scientific study compared different methods of estimating temperature impacts on global crop production. Since the different methods point to very similar impacts, it improves our confidence in estimating temperature impact on global crop production.”
Good news for science. Probably not so great for dinner in the 22nd century.
This article originally appeared on takepart.com. Read the original here.
I’ve always loved the name of these, and there has always been something dangerously attractive about the whole wasp element of this dish. Also, these buns looked very much like the stuff we’d see in foreign films. Were there Swedish cinnamon rolls in Ingmar Bergman films? Maybe not. Were they in the incredibly popular Astred Lindgren Karlsson-on-the-Roof cartoon adaptations? The Moomins?! Either way, they looked exotic and fed my fantasies of living somewhere abroad when it was still a risky and unrealistic thought.
This circular, sesame seed-coated bread has been baked in Istanbul since the 1500s. Today, similar versions are enjoyed from Greece to Bulgaria and Lebanon, with its size and texture (crunchy or chewy) varying from region to region. Traditionally eaten as a snack or as part of a breakfast spread, simit goes well with chunks of feta or tulum cheese, slices of cucumber, tomato, olives and basturma (air-dried, cured and spiced beef).
The bread they use is from famous Parisian boulangerie Poilâne. As a substitute, owner William Oglethorpe recommends day-old (or two-day-old) sourdough. The cheese used at the market is Montgomery cheddar. “A mature cheddar would be fine,” says William, “maybe with some kind of Gruyère – that would be nice.”