Reference Date: 25-April-2016
FOOD SECURITY SNAPSHOT
Civil insecurity affected planting activities of 2016B season crops
Below-average production of recently‑harvested 2016A season crops due to disruption of agricultural activities in areas affected by civil insecurity and displacements
About 690 000 people estimated to be severely food‑insecure due to insecurity and economic crisis
Limited access to humanitarian assistance reported in several areas
Reduced planted area for 2016B season crops in areas affected by civil insecurity
Planting of 2016B season crops has been completed in March and planted area is reported to be below average in most areas affected by civil insecurity. The 2016 main rainy season (February‑May) has started on time across the country and precipitations have been mostly favourable, benefitting crop development and pasture conditions. However, satellite‑based images show stressed vegetation health conditions in western provinces due to short dry spells which occurred in mid‑March. According to official weather forecasts, rains are expected to be between average and above‑average levels until the end of the season, with positive effects on yields and pasture availability.
Below-average output from 2016A season crops
Aggregate production of the 2016A season cereal crops, harvested at the beginning of the year, is estimated to be about 10 percent below the last five‑year average. Despite the favourable “small‑rains” season (September to January) that induced farmers to increase plantings in areas not affected by the conflict and benefitted yields, production has been well below average in the most conflict‑affected areas of Rumonge, Bujumbura, Muyinga, Kirundo and Makamba provinces where large displacement of farmers and lack of inputs have significantly disrupted seasonal agricultural activities.
Food security conditions continue to deteriorate in areas affected by unrest and civil insecurity
Food security conditions remain stressed in the provinces most affected by the ongoing civil unrest, including parts of Kirundo, Muyinga, Rutada and Makamba provinces as well as rural areas near Bujumbura. In February 2016, a Multi‑Agency Emergency Food Security Assessment (ESFA) estimated that about 690 000 people are severely food insecure due to insecurity and worsening socio‑economic conditions, with shrinking governmental budget allocated to basic services and declining food import capacity (due to low foreign reserves and strong depreciation of the local currency). Insecurity is also severely limiting access to humanitarian assistance, especially outside the capital city. Since civil unrest erupted in April/May 2015, over 250 000 people have fled their homes and 90 percent of them have arrived in the neighbouring countries of Rwanda, Uganda, the United Republic of Tanzania and the Democratic Republic of the Congo as refugees and asylum seekers, while the remaining 10 percent is internally displaced in the country.