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Country Briefs

  Nicaragua

Reference Date: 10-November-2016

FOOD SECURITY SNAPSHOT

  1. Cereal production in 2016 to recover from last year’s drought-reduced level

  2. Cereal imports expected to decrease in 2016/17 marketing year

  3. Prices of white maize and beans strongly declined in October

Cereal production in 2016 to recover from last year’s drought-reduced level

The harvest of the main “de primera” cereal season, accounting for some 60 percent of the annual cereal production, concluded in October and early estimates point to a better-than-expected outcome. Planting of the second season, mostly of beans, also concluded in October under favourable weather conditions. Reflecting the good first season harvest, the 2016 cereal production forecast has been revised upwards to 855 000 tonnes, 22 percent up from last year’s drought‑reduced level and above the five-year average. The increase mainly reflects a recovery in the area sown favoured by improved precipitation as a result of the dissipation of the El Niño event at the beginning of the season. Output of maize, in particular, is anticipated to recover sharply from last year’s reduced level to 420 000 tonnes. Rice and sorghum are also anticipated to increase but at a smaller rate.

Cereal imports expected to decrease in 2016/17 marketing year

Cereal imports in the current 2016/17 marketing year (September/August) are expected to decrease by 5 percent from the previous year reflecting the recovery in this year’s cereal output and in particular maize. However, firm imports of wheat are anticipated to maintain aggregate cereal imports above the five-year average.

Prices of white maize and beans strongly declined in October

White maize prices declined by almost 30 percent in October, continuing the downward trend of the previous months and were almost 20 percent below year-earlier levels, as ample supplies from the main “de primera” cereal season harvest, estimated to have strongly recovered from last year’s drought-reduced level, continued to pressure prices downward.

Prices of beans declined 8 percent in October with the conclusion of the good secondary “de primera” season harvest and were some 28 percent below year-earlier levels.