published: Sunday, October 20, 2013
The looming chocolate crisis
Now that the budget crisis is over (or on temporary hold) it is time for us to turn our attention to a real problem looming over the horizon. A problem that both Democrats and Republicans can unite to solve because the issue is so far above petty politics.
What am I talking about? The looming chocolate crisis, of course.
I am not kidding. According to an article I read on www.indianexpress.com, some industry experts are concerned that the world's cocoa supply will not be able to keep up with the rising demand. At a recent meeting at the British Library in London, these people even projected a date when the world will run out of cocoa. If you're marking your calendars, it's Oct. 2, 2020.
Chocolate expert and taster Angus Kennedy is quoted in the article, saying that "much of the space that was used for cocoa plantations is no longer there." While there isn't much growth for cocoa consumption predicted for Europe and the Americas Kennedy is expecting there to be a huge amount of growth in Asia.
As a confirmed chocoholic, I am taking this report very seriously. Run out of cocoa in less than seven years? This can't be allowed to happen!
I don't remember a time when I didn't like chocolate. Yes, I know the warnings about pimples and weight gain and all sorts of other dire things. When it comes to chocolate, I'm willing to take my chances.
When it comes to candy, I love dark chocolate. I was very happy when news came out that dark chocolate could be good for you. Doctors agreeing that I could eat chocolate? Oh, yeah.
But I don't limit myself to candy. For a long time my favorite Dairy Queen Blizzard flavor was German Chocolate Brownie, though the quality of the concoction varied depending on if whoever was making Blizzards that day remembered how to create this one (it's not a regular flavor). Then last month they came out with Choco-covered Cheesecake Blizzard and a new love was born.
At my favorite coffee shop, Brewster's, I indulge in their signature Brewster's Mocha - white chocolate and caramel. Purists will argue that white chocolate isn't really chocolate at all. These people need to shut up and have a Brewster's Mocha.
I haven't even gone into all the other ways one can feed their chocolate habit - pies and cakes and even chocolate milk. And there are hot fudge sundaes with sliced banana (don't knock it until you've tried it). And...and...
The point is that running out of cocoa is a Bad Thing. And we need to do what we can to stop it.
How? Obviously we need more cocoa plantations. Since it takes four years to get cocoa beans from a cocoa plant, we must start now and not wait until the last minute.
Start what, you ask? Annexing land for cocoa plantations, that's what. Why is there less land for these necessary locations anyway? What got put in their place? Condos?
Now the problem is that cocoa plants have to be grown near the equator. So we can't exactly use our own United States to resolve the crisis. We must head south.
Surely there's something we can offer those who own prime cocoa growing land. Maybe a chance to be the 51st state? An all expenses paid trip to Disneyworld? Congress? (On second thought, who would want our Congress in its current state?)
Call your Senator! Call your representative! Demand they deal with the impending chocolate shortage before it's too late! I plan to join you, as soon as I finish up this hot fudge sundae and chocolate milk. Yum.
Laura Ware is a Sebring resident. She can be contacted by e-mail at bookwormlady@
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