Reference Date: 11-February-2014
FOOD SECURITY SNAPSHOT
An above average rice production was gathered in 2013
Inflation dropped, driven by more stable currency
Above-average harvest gathered in 2013
Harvesting of the 2013 main rice crop was completed in September. Rains and soil moisture have been generally adequate during the cropping season, allowing satisfactory development of crops. The 2013 rice production (paddy) is estimated to increase by 10 percent compared to the2012 above-average output. Similarly, a good cassava harvest was gathered.
An above-average harvest was already gathered in 2012. The 2012 rice production was estimated at about 1.4 million tonnes, 9 percent higher than in 2011 and well above the average of the previous five years. Yield levels for rice have grown only gradually since the end of the civil war, and production gains are mainly as a result of an expansion in the cultivated area, which has grown each year since 2003.
Access to food has improved, reflecting lower inflation
The country’s dependency on imported rice has been decreasing however, it is still a net rice importer, with imports expected to reach approximately 80 000 tonnes, about 15 percent of total utilisation in 2013.
Access to food has improved in recent months, driven mostly by lower prices of imported commodities.
The steep depreciation of the Leone (local currency) since 2009 led to higher inflation rates. Average national inflation is estimated to have reached 16 percent in 2011.
However, the national currency became relatively stable from early 2012 on, pushing inflation down to 12.9 percent in 2012. Consumer price inflation is estimated to have dropped further to 12.2 percent in 2013 driven by the continuing recovery of the Leone and more stable international commodity prices.
Nearly 50 percent of households’ expenditure in urban, peri‑urban and rural areas is allocated to food purchases, according to a WFP recent assessment.