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Reference Date: 18-November-2014


  1. Near-average rains in southern provinces at start of 2014/15 cropping season (October/June)

  2. Maize production in 2014 recovered from last year’s reduced level

  3. Prices of maize remain stable and below last year’s levels, reflecting larger supplies in 2014

  4. Food security conditions improved with good maize harvest

Planting of 2014 cereal crops underway

Cumulative rains during October, the beginning of the 2014/15 cropping season, have been near-normal in southern and some central provinces, with planting underway. In northern areas, planting is expected to commence in late November and December, as seasonal rains move further north. Forecasts from December 2014 to March 2015 indicate a higher probability of normal to above-normal rains across most of the country, apart from some areas of Cabo Delgado province, where drier conditions may be experienced until the end of the year. Overall, current forecasts point to a positive outlook for the 2015 cereal crops.

Cereal production increased in 2014

The 2014 maize harvest was estimated at about 1.9 million tonnes, recovering from the reduced outputs of the previous two years. A slight expansion in plantings and higher yields, reflecting favourable rains, account for the increase, in spite of some rainfall deficits in southern parts. Overall, total cereal production is estimated at 2.5 million tonnes, 13 percent up on 2013’s output.

Maize prices remain well below year-earlier levels

After decreasing strongly earlier in the year, maize prices remained generally stable since July, with limited seasonal increases. Prices were well below their year-earlier levels (between 10 and 40 percent lower in November 2014 compared to November 2013), reflecting adequate national supplies.

Lower prices and ample maize supplies improved food security

Overall, food security conditions are much improved compared to the previous year. The larger household stocks, on account of the increased cereal harvest, and lower prices have improved availability and access. Livestock conditions are also favourable, reflecting adequate pasture availability. However, an estimated 150 000 people remain at risk of food security and require assistance between December 2014 and March 2015, mainly due to production shortfalls caused by floods.

Relevant links:
 As of Oct 2014, included in the list of "Countries Requiring External Assistance for Food"
 Cereal Supply/Demand Balance Sheet
 Food Price Data and Analysis Tool
 Earth Observation Indicators
 Seasonal Indicators
 Vegetation Indicators
 Precipitation Indicators
 Graphs & Data
 NDVI & Precipitation
 Crop and Food Security Assessment Mission (CFSAM) Reports & Special Alerts: 2010, 2005, 2004, 2003, 2002, 2000, 1998, 1997, 1996
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 FAO Country Profiles