The latest campaign from coffee giant Nespresso highlights the need to protect high-quality coffee from climate threats.

George Clooney is back starring in The Empty Cup, which features the star looking glum and holding an empty coffee cup to illustrate the risk facing many coffee growers around the world.

He says: “The threat of climate change is real and coffee farmers are on the front line. It’s vital that we empower these communities to build financial and environmental resilience, so that they not only survive but thrive and prosper. This concept is at the heart of the Nespresso approach. But this is about more than coffee. Climate change is not something that a single company or even an entire industry can fix. It requires urgent, bold action on a global scale. The stakes are high.”

Nespresso works directly with more than 140,000 coffee growers and securing and protecting the future of high-quality coffee has been central to the company’s strategy for the last 20 years. Launched in 2003 in collaboration with Rainforest Alliance, the Nespresso AAA Sustainable Quality Program helps to improve the yield and quality of harvests while protecting the environment and improving the livelihoods of farmers and their communities.

Empowering farming communities to protect their land against weather shocks while simultaneously combatting the causes of climate change is critical to the future sustainability of high-grade coffee. Nespresso is doing this through regenerative agriculture: an approach that has the potential to not only reduce global agri-food emissions but to increase rural resilience against the impacts of climate change.

Currently, 60% of wild coffee species are endangered and 50% of the land used to grow coffee today could be unviable by 2050. Fine-grade Arabica is particularly vulnerable to weather shocks. Santiago Gowland, Rainforest Alliance CEO, said: “Almost a quarter of emissions come from agriculture, forestry and other land use. We urgently need swifter action to address climate change and changing the way we grow our food must play a big part. The good news is that transitioning to regenerative agriculture can reduce the impact of farming and sustain our global food system for future generations.”

Nespresso is collaborating with the Rainforest Alliance to build a framework for regenerative agriculture in coffee. ✤