Try not to panic, everyone, but apparently chocolate is an endangered species. So says a recent Business Insider article titled "Chocolate is on track to go extinct in 40 years." So much for a Happy New Year, huh?
According to the piece, scientists estimate cacao plants, the natural source of chocolate, could be a thing of the past by 2050. These plants, which grow in rainforest land near the equator, have been hit hard by fungal disease and the "hoax" known as "climate change" in recent years. This might be enough of a reason to explore living on another planet. (Side note: Over half the world's chocolate now comes from just two countries in West Africa. So please keep West Africa in your prayers.)
At least one chocolate giant, Mars, is stepping up. The company has pledged $1 billion to help reduce its carbon footprint and work with scientists to develop cacao plants that aren't can hold up better under drier conditions and different elevations. You can read more about these efforts and a new DNA-tweaking technology called CRISPR here, but essentially, there's no guarantee they will find a solution to be able to keep producing the Earth's best treat.
So yeah, us chocolate lovers still have plenty of time to stuff our faces and eventually stockpile the good stuff, but think of future generations possibly living without M&Ms. Or Hershey Kisses. Or (gasp) Milky Ways. Excuse me while I cry into a bag of Christmas Kit Kats.