Worldwide barley shortage may affect beer supplies

A predicted impact on barley crops by climate change could threaten worldwide beer production.

That's the finding of new research, which says if global warming continues unabated, extreme heat waves and drought could threaten crops in barley growing regions.

Barley is one of the main ingredients in beer.

The study was carried out by researchers at the University of East Anglia and said in some countries, beer prices could more than double in drought years.

The study was published in the journal Nature Plants, and suggested Ireland and Canada could see a more than 200 percent increase in beer prices.

"While the effects on beer may seem modest in comparison to many of the other, some life-threatening impacts of climate change, there is nonetheless something fundamental in the cross-cultural appreciation of beer," study lead author Dabo Guan, a climate change economics professor at the University of East Anglia in the United Kingdom, told Bloomberg Environment.

"Some of the general population may not care about climate change or the impact, but if we're saying it's going to affect their daily life or their lifestyles or social-stability issues, then people may stop to think," he said.