Okay, so drought has come for our coffee, steak, whiskey, and almond supplies. That’s fine. No problem. Let’s just settle in here with an IPA and figure out what — OH GOD, IS NOTHING LEFT?

NBC chatted with the hops farmers in Washington’s Yakima basin — a.k.a. the source of almost 3/4 of all U.S. hops — and found that they were looking at a hops loss almost across the board, perhaps even a shortage, starting as soon as next year. But not all hops were equally as likely to be feeling the heat:

Most hops are fairly tolerant of a little less water and can handle the heat. That said, three varietals — Centennial, Simcoe and Amarillo — tend not to hold up as well in extreme conditions, according to Desmarais. He added that another variety, the Cascade, is in that same risk category “to a slightly lesser degree.”

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No, things are not looking so good for the IPA. But at this point, you may have noticed a curious trend: Coffee, bourbon, IPAs, almonds, Spanish olive oil, American beef, all are slipping away from us one by one. Yet Monster energy drinks live on, even ballooning wildly their share of the market. Surely this is evidence of some great malignant force at work behind the scenes, right?

No, what you have spotted here is simply the way of the drought, my friend.

Drought does not care about taste or tradition; it is not worried about whether or not you’ll have something suitably non-shameful to bring to your dinner party; it’s not concerned about your health, either emotional or physical. Drought simply strikes where it strikes, and takes out what it takes out. And the more specialized the product, the fewer places it’s likely to grow and thrive, and the more vulnerable it is to dropping out altogether.

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Image: BlueSkyImage / shutterstock