Across the country, people may find their nerves on edge, not because they’re drinking too much coffee, but actually due to their lack of caffeine and other coffee-related ingredients.
There’s nothing quite like the disappointment of realizing you’re all out of that vital ingredient needed to make your perfect morning brew. Whether it’s a lack of sugar, milk, or coffee itself, the stress can really put you off your game and affect the rest of your day.
Not only that but consumers are finding that their local retailers are suffering from the same shortages as their own pantries.
So, what’s going on?
In this article, we’ll be discussing how the recent supply-chain and climate-change issues faced by the country can have a direct effect on your coffee intake as well as which ingredients, in particular, are at risk.
Keep on reading to find out more.
While the global economy is steadily beginning to emerge from the effects of the COVID-19 pandemic, global supply chains worldwide are struggling to keep up. With lockdowns being lifted in many places, supply chains are under an increasing amount of pressure to deliver goods in an efficient way and on time.
The reasons why suppliers and manufacturers of goods are struggling to make deliveries include a lack of raw materials and worker shortages following a global shutdown.
Additionally, the effects of human-caused global warming are finally being seen. Changes in weather patterns around the world are leading to a shortage of many products we find on our grocery store shelves.
How This Affects Your Coffee
Due to ongoing issues in the supply chain, many grocery stores are facing a lack of products on their shelves. This includes all the stuff you may need to make your much-needed morning cup of joe.
Here is a list of some of the ingredients that may be essential to your daily coffee routine that you may struggle to find in your local supermarket:
Milk (Dairy and Plant-Based)
Many consumers are heading to their grocery stores to find bare refrigerated milk shelves. As a result, grocery store workers are recommending that customers seek alternative ways of obtaining this sometimes desired coffee ingredient, including switching to a plant-based option.
However, many retailers are also reporting a shortage of even plant-based alternatives. With the recent global shift in consciousness leading to more people demanding environmentally friendly options, demands for soy, almond, or other dairy substitutes are higher than ever.
Earlier this year, coffee powerhouse Starbucks suffered from a significant oat-milk shortage shortly after announcing that they would offer the plant-based option. As a result, people turned to their local supermarkets which resulted in a lot of bulk buying.
While sugar may not entirely disappear from the shelves, you may want to keep a close eye on the price. This is due to climate concerns surrounding the world’s biggest producer of sugar – Brazil. The recent shifts in weather affecting the country are making it significantly more difficult to produce successful sugar crops. Since the country’s founding, the exporting of sugar has been a key feature of Brazil’s economy. But as it struggles to supply this sweet substance, prices are going up.
By far the most crucial ingredient needed to make your morning coffee – the beans themselves – is also at risk. Record-breaking droughts in Colombia (the world’s leading exporters of coffee beans) and unpredictable weather patterns in Brazil are among the reasons why your coffee may suddenly begin to soar in price.
Hope for The Future
If there’s one thing that we have collectively learned as a result of the pandemic and the climate crisis it’s that nothing is for certain.
However, we humans are known for our adaptability. A shortage in supplies only creates room for creative thinking. A lack of milk may lead you to start to enjoy black coffee more often (which is actually a healthier option).
Also, many businesses are seeking alternative ways of dealing with the issue of supply chains, including using more eco-friendly forms of transport. In the U.K., for instance, companies like Magway are offering an all-electric, zero-emissions, underground delivery system to get goods to people quicker while also being environmentally conscious. Perhaps this is what the future of delivery will look like if we just learn to adapt.
Have you struggled to get all the ingredients for your daily coffee? Were there things missing from your local supermarket? Do let us know of your experience by leaving a comment below.