The race to save chocolate from climate change

Chocolate: without it, peanut butter cups are just weird. And we may be facing just such weirdness in the future, thanks to climate change. But a team of scientists is working to save it (chocolate, not the climate).

It’s true, chocolate, the main ingredient in fudge, could cease to be in the decades ahead, because the cacao plant is losing its habitat thanks to climate change. Cacao plants need to be grown in a very specific, unchanging environment, which is why they don’t stand a chance as things continue to get crazy weatherwise. That’s why a team of researchers is using gene editing technology to make cacao better able to grow at higher elevations, where weather is generally more stable.

However, if we do run out of chocolate, at least all the chocoholics will get clean.

Your head would be bigger if your ancestors didn’t eat cheese

Thousands of years ago, people decided to stop roaming around and killing stuff and set up farms. And somehow our heads stopped growing because we invented cheese.

According to researchers, humans began to have smaller heads and sleeker jaws around the time that we started relying on dairy foods, like milk and cheese, and farmed plants, for sustenance. The argument is that humans started eating softer foods, rather than crunching and grinding away on whatever we could rustle up in the forest. This meant that we didn’t need huge, powerful jaws anymore.

But it’s important to keep in mind that the whole reason we started farming was to make beer. Society as we know it today was founded on beer and cheese.

Shirking duties in life only costs a small fee

Sometimes the stress of life in an office environment is just a bit too much for the denizens of Tokyo. Suicide used to be a common option, but now that’s being replaced by Marunouchi Morning University’s program where Tokyoites pay $400 to learn how to farm. Apparently, Japan hasn’t heard about global economic crisis affecting the world. Such decadence.

Some of these people, sick of working in their various fields, are even considering giving up the office life for the daily toil of farming. It’s interesting to see the fluctuation from a massive culture of office life in the 1970s and ’80s turn into a rejection of it; more and more small businesses are being set up,  and some people are moving back to the countryside. Will those small, family-run shops gain a new life?

Realism says nope, be prepared to be absorbed into Giganto-Mart. It’s the price of decadence.

Dear Japan: I can teach you how to farm for a dollar and fifty cents. What can I say? Mangoes and tangerines ain’t going down in price.