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Reference Date: 25-November-2014

FOOD SECURITY SNAPSHOT

  1. 2014 maize crop forecast at severely reduced levels, prospects for beans remain uncertain

  2. Large number of families affected by drought during main first cereal season

  3. Cereal imports expected to rise in 2014/15 marketing year (July/June)

  4. Prices of beans and maize begin to decline in November but still at high levels

2014 maize crop forecast at severely reduced levels, prospects for beans remain uncertain

Harvest of the 2014 second de postrera season crops, mainly beans, is almost concluded. Despite a late start of planting activities due to below-average rainfall during the first dekad of September, estimates point to a significant increase in the area planted compared to the same season last year, particularly for red beans.

Early prospects for the de postrera maize crop harvest, which accounts for 20 percent of annual production, are good following abundant precipitations from the last dekad of September. However, the 2014 maize aggregate production (de primera and de postrera crops) is forecast to fall by 34 percent compared to last year and well below the country’s five-year average, after 204 000 tonnes of crop were lost during the main de primera season, due to severe dry weather from the last dekad of July up to the first dekad of September.

Prospects for the de postrera bean harvest, which accounts for 70 percent of annual production, remain uncertain as above-average rainfall during the growing season may have negatively affected crops. Pending an assessment of the damage, output of the de postrera bean crop is expected to reach 92 000 tonnes or slightly higher than in 2013. This increase mainly reflects higher plantings due to high prices and Government support programmes, including the distribution of seeds and fertilizers.

Large number of families affected by drought during main first cereal season

A severe drought affected crops and livestock in the departments of Choluteca, El Paraiso and parts of Olancho from late June to late September. The number of families affected is officially estimated at some 186 000 and Government food distributions programmes are limited to 76 712 most vulnerable households, mainly small farmers. Food assistance and inputs distribution are provided within the framework of a contingency plan, totalling USD 4.7 million. An additional USD 500 000 were donated to WFP by the Government of Japan to assist 3 600 families under work-for-food programme, mainly in Choluteca and El Paraíso department, which experienced major damages from the drought.

Cereal imports expected to rise in 2014/15 marketing year (July/June)

Cereal imports in the 2014/15 marketing year (July/June) are forecast to reach 950 000 tonnes, 17 percent up from last year’s high level. This mainly reflects a 30 percent increase in maize imports, to a record level of 585 000 tonnes, as a result of the severe crop losses during the main de primera season coupled with high domestic demand, particularly from the feed industry. By contrast, wheat and rice imports are expected to remain unchanged.

Prices of beans and maize begin to decline in November but still at high levels

Prices of red beans and maize have started to decline with the new harvest in November. Red bean prices have declined some 8 percent from their record levels in October but remain more than double their year-earlier levels. Maize prices have also declined in November but remain 17 percent higher than in November 2013.









Relevant links:
From GIEWS:
 As of Oct 2014, included in the list of "Countries Requiring External Assistance for Food"
 Food Price Data and Analysis Tool
 Earth Observation Indicators
 Maps
 Seasonal Indicators
 Vegetation Indicators
 Precipitation Indicators
 Graphs & Data
 NDVI & Precipitation
 Crop and Food Security Assessment Mission (CFSAM) Reports & Special Alerts: 1999
From FAO:
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