World cereal production set to jump 8 percent this year
The outlook for global cereal supply in the 2013/14 marketing season remains generally favourable despite downward adjustments to forecasts for world cereal production and closing stocks, according to the latest issue of FAO's quarterly Crop Prospects and Food Situation report.
This report highlights the following food insecurity hotspots, among others:
In Syria, due to conflict about 4 million people are in need of humanitarian assistance.
In the Democratic People's Republic of Korea, an estimated 2.8 million vulnerable people require food assistance until the next harvest in October.
Despite an improved food supply situation this year in the Sahel, a large number of people are still affected by conflict and the lingering effects of the 2011/12 food crisis, notably in northern Mali.
In Central Africa, the food security situation continues to deteriorate in the Central African Republic (CAR) and in the Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC) due to protracted civil insecurity. Nearly 6.35 million people in DRC (18 percent up on last year) and 1.3 million people in CAR (more than double from February 2013) are in need of humanitarian assistance.
In Southern Africa, drought conditions in western parts resulted in a decline in cereal production and in higher prices in 2013, causing a rise in the number of food insecure, particularly in Namibia.
In Zimbabwe, maize production in 2013 declined by about 18 percent from last year's below average level.
In Somalia, South Sudan and Sudan about 870 000, 1.2 million and 4.3 million people respectively are in need of humanitarian assistance due to conflict, natural disasters and other causes.
FAO will hold a second Ministerial Meeting on International Food Prices on Monday 7 October at its Rome headquarters to provide a forum to discuss food price volatility and the policy challenges it poses. More than 40 government ministers are expected.