Reference Date: 24-October-2013
FOOD SECURITY SNAPSHOT
Harvest prospects are uncertain due to irregular rains during 2013 cropping season
Cereal markets remain well supplied, following several consecutive years of good crop
Nevertheless, large number of people face chronic food insecurity and malnutrition
Harvest prospects mixed following irregular rains
Harvesting of first season maize crop has just been completed in the South. In the North, which only has one rainy season, the harvesting of cereals has begun. Harvest prospects are mixed following erratic precipitation in several parts of the country, notably in the North. Food production in 2013 is likely to be lower than last year’s bumper crop.
Cereal production has been increasing steadily over the past few years, reflecting mostly stable weather conditions, and a record crop was gathered in 2012. Official estimates indicate that cereal production expanded by 12 percent in 2012, over previous year’s level, to about 1.19 million tonnes. This level of production was 19 percent above the average of the previous five years. Production of maize, the main staple cereal, was estimated at a record 807 000 tonnes.
Prices of coarse grains continue to follow normal seasonal patterns in general
Reflecting several years of good harvests, markets remain generally well supplied and coarse grains prices continue to follow normal seasonal patterns in most parts of the country. For example, in Lomé, maize prices remained mostly stable over last year, reflecting adequate supply. In September 2013 maize prices were similar to their levels a year earlier. Prices of imported rice, mainly consumed in urban centres, also remained stable across the country in recent months, in line with trends in international markets.
A substantial section of the population are exposed to chronic food insecurity
Despite the satisfactory food supply situation, large numbers of people are exposed to chronic food insecurity and malnutrition, notably in the northern part of the country. According to the WFP’s latest detailed survey of food security and vulnerability, about 50 percent of the population of Kara and Savanes regions suffers from food insecurity. The North of Togo includes the poorest zones where malnutrition levels are the highest.