In the last few months, Brazil has been facing a scenario of extreme climate volatility, which has left coffee growers on alert. The country has experienced a series of events, including intense heat: we are in the third heat wave in less than 3 months. This has raised alarm bells for coffee plantations. After all, what are the impacts of the intense heat on the crops?
Heat waves and their impacts
Any extreme weather condition can cause stress to the coffee plant. Temperatures above 33 degrees Celsius during the reproductive phase of arabica coffee can lead to physiological stress in the plants, resulting in the loss of flowers and fruits. In addition, high temperatures can dehydrate flower buds, affecting future blooms. However, the magnitude of the damage is directly linked to the duration of the intense heat and the subsequent rainfall pattern.
It is essential to emphasize that attention and the adoption of appropriate measures by producers are essential to mitigate the possible damage caused by heat and other extreme weather events.
The influence of El Niño
The high temperatures experienced this year were mainly caused by the El Niño phenomenon, which consists of an increase in the temperature of sea water on the coasts of Peru and Ecuador. For the past three years, the La Niña phenomenon has been active, meaning that the temperature of the Pacific waters has been below average. Therefore, the polar air masses reached the Southeast of Brazil more easily and the rainfall was above average.
In addition, global warming and the resulting climate changes have made extreme weather events, such as intense heat waves, increasingly frequent on the planet. These changes are the direct result of human activities, such as the emission of polluting gases, once again reinforcing the importance of sustainable actions.
In short, climate oscillations and intensification are factors that have significantly challenged Brazilian coffee growing. Being prepared to face these challenges is not always an easy task, but it proves the resilience of coffee growing, one of the most important sectors of the Brazilian economy.
Check out the results from the first group of coffee growers of the Project Mutua – Forests and Springs, an Atlantica Coffee initiative to boost sustainability and positive impact coffee growing. Click here to read.
*This article aims only to provide information about the impacts of weather, based on internal and public sources, valid at the time of its dissemination. It does not aim to guide recipients in making any decisions, which are therefore solely the responsibility of the recipient. Atlantica Coffee is exempt from any liability arising from direct or indirect losses.