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Country Briefs


Reference Date: 12-February-2018


  1. Early official estimates point to above average production for 2017 cropping season

  2. Pockets of chronic food insecurity persist, mostly in north

Above average harvest gathered in 2017

Harvesting of the 2017 second season maize crop was completed in January in the South. In the North, which has only one rainy season, harvesting of coarse grains was completed in November 2017. Agricultural seasons in the South as well as the single season in the North were characterized by timely and adequate rains. Despite localized outbreaks of Fall Armyworm, an above-average cereal crop production of 1.4 million tonnes, almost 10 percent above the five-year average, was harvested. Production of maize, the main staple cereal, is estimated at about 925 000 tonnes, nearly 12 percent above the previous year’s level of production and 16 percent above the five-year average.

On average, the country imports every year about 300 000 tonnes of cereals, mostly rice for human consumption.

Despite abundant harvest, pockets of chronic food insecurity persist, mostly in north

Annual food inflation in 2017 remained negative, ranging from negative 10 to 2 percent, while the general inflation ranged from negative 3 to positive 1 percent. The abundant harvest is estimated to put downward pressure on cereal prices.

Good harvests due to favourable weather conditions and price stability across the markets are expected to improve the access to food. According to the latest Cadre Harmonisé (Harmonized Framework), conducted in the country in November 2017, about 9 000 people were estimated to be in Phase 3: “Crisis” and above, down from about 25 000 people a year earlier. Nevertheless, chronic food insecurity and malnutrition affects the local population, notably in the northern part of the country.

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