We already know that the price of barley has doubled over the least year, but according to a scientist from New Zealand, global warming may keep that situation from getting any better and will continue to hamper efforts to increase the supply of barley to be used in making beer.
From the AP story:
Jim Salinger, a climate scientist at New Zealand’s National Institute of Water and Atmospheric Research, said climate change likely will cause a decline in the production of malting barley in parts of New Zealand and Australia. Malting barley is a key ingredient of beer.
Speaking at the Institute of Brewing and Distilling ‘s 30th Asia Pacific Section Convention, Salinger predicted “the price of beer is likely to rise in coming decades because climate change will hamper the production of a key grain needed for the brew — especially in Australia.”
Though Salinger was talking about only his native New Zealand and Australia, it’s not hard to extrapolate that the same climate changes will have similar effects in other parts of the world, too. He finished his talk on this cheery note. “[C]limate change could cause a drop in beer production within 30 years, especially in parts of Australia, as dry areas become drier and water shortages worsen.”