Suds shocker! Climate change could see beer prices soar in Denmark

Carlsberg among breweries testing new and more sturdy grain types

If there’s ever been a more important reason to take climate change seriously – aside from the rising sea levels, volatile weather, drought, and rising temperatures – here it is.

According to new research, climate change could very well see beer prices skyrocket across the planet, and yes, that would include Denmark.

The research, carried out by Peking University and the University of California, demonstrates that the changing weather conditions will most likely have a drastic impact on future harvests of barley.

The research found that the world could end up losing upwards of 17 percent of barley crops over the next 80 years – leading to a significant spike in beer prices.

“Ultimately, our modelling suggests that increasingly widespread and severe droughts and heat under climate change will cause considerable disruption to global beer consumption and increase beer prices,” the research report (here in English) found.

“During the most severe climate events, our results indicate that global beer consumption would decline by 16 percent and that beer prices would, on average, double.”

READ MORE: Beer losing its fizz at the worst possible time due to CO2 shortage

Carlsberg preparing
The researchers used climate models to predict weather conditions, along with their impact on barley harvesting, and compared financial models to estimate the influence on the supply and price in different countries.

The issue has been recognised by Danish brewery giant Carlsberg, which has started preparations in response to the challenge of climate change.

“We are developing new types of grain sorts that already today seem to be sturdy in the face of climate change, which are particularly resistant to extreme heat and drought. The new crops must be able to be cultivated in Denmark, but also in other parts of the world,” Birgitte Skadhauge, a research head with Carlsberg, told DR Nyheder.

The new types of malted barley are not genetically modified and have been tested in realistic conditions in Australia and New Zealand.

The research has been published in the scientific journal Nature.