Perenial Wheat Coffee

January 12, 2012

I recently learned that there is a perennial wheat plant that sends it roots down 10 feet, reducing soil erosion, top soil fertilization, water needs and crop rotation. It could radically change our farming paradigm for long-term environmental good. Studies are being done at the Land Institute to increase the yield for economic viability.

Coffee is a perennial tree that provides all those benefits. It has made positive environmental and economic impact in war-torn countries like Uganda and Rwanda. The Borlaug Institute sponsored an exploratory trip to South Sudan to investigate the viability of coffee in that country.

As the world becomes more populated, it is important to be aware of, and support, development that will make a positive difference for all people. One aspect I love about coffee is its beautiful symbiotic relationship between consumers and growers. Coffee can and does make a difference in the lives of hundreds of thousands of women, men and children. When western consumers make a buying decision to buy quality coffee, they are helping our industry become more impactful. When perennial wheat and corn become viable, it will dramatically change the landscape of clear-cut land, drought and hard-packed soil that is barren, especially in places like Sudan.

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