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Syria needs to produce food

Syrian crisis

The Syrian crisis has entered its tenth year, and the humanitarian needs continue to be extraordinarily high. Conflict, displacement, returns and the destruction of agricultural infrastructure have severely affected livelihoods and food security. The current economic crisis is worsening the situation, and the poverty rate is increasing. Since January 2020, the number of food insecure people rose dramatically from 7.9 million in January to 9.3 million in June, and an additional 1.9 million people are at risk of food insecurity.

The situation in the Syrian Arab Republic continues to drive the largest refugee crisis in the world. Of the 5.5 million registered refugees from the Syrian Arab Republic, 2.6 million are children. In addition, 4.6 million host community members are impacted in the main refugee hosting countries – Turkey, Lebanon, Jordan, Iraq and Egypt.

Over 11 million people across the Syrian Arab Republic need aid and protection while the economic crisis has grown into another major driver of humanitarian need. The poverty rate is over 90 percent.

COVID-19 

The impacts of the coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) pandemic, particularly movement restrictions and curfews, are likely to significantly worsen the food security and livelihoods situation. 

  • Control measures are impacting the agriculture sector, reducing accessibility to markets and leading to higher prices for inputs, including seeds, fertilizers, pesticides, fuel and labor.
  • Livestock has been the most affected sector by the COVID-19 control measures. Livestock keepers cannot afford to buy the required standard quantities of cattle feed, which will eventually affect productivity. Sheep and goat keepers face limited access to grazing lands as well as high feed prices. In the poultry sector, producers of broilers and eggs are experiencing challenges in securing inputs, consequently creating massive fluctuations in the prices of broilers and eggs.
  • Food processors are facing higher costs of raw materials, transportation, fuel and skilled labor. As a result, processors have been forced to the raise prices of their final food products by 20 percent on average to maintain quality, sufficient supplies and good distribution in national markets.

Agricultural livelihoods and value chains at the forefront of actions

It is critical to restore and protect the agricultural livelihoods of Syrians and reduce their use of negative coping mechanism to meet their daily needs. To increase self-reliance and strengthen resilience of Syrians, FAO aims to protect and build productive assets, restore or create income-generating opportunities and help vulnerable families produce food.

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