FAO/GIEWS - Foodcrops & Shortages 02/01 - CHAD (5 February)

CHAD (5 February)

Seasonably dry conditions prevail. Harvesting of berbéré (recessional sorghum) is underway. Yields are lower than last year due to lack of water and grain-eating birds attacks. A joint FAO/CILSS Crop Assessment Mission estimated the 2000 cereal production at 890 000 tonnes, which is 28 percent below the 1999 record level and 16 percent below the last five years average.

Following this reduced harvest, the food supply situation will tighten in the structurally deficit zones of the Sahelian Zone, notably in the Guéra and Lac departments. Unusual population movements were reported from the cantons of Baderi, N'Gouri and Yalita in Lac Department to major urban centres, southern Chad or the Lake Chad area. In the Sudanian Zone, the food situation is also worsening in the rice producing areas, notably in Mayo-Kebbi department. The cotton harvest in the south is also anticipated to be reduced, but groundnut production is good. Prices of millet remain close to those of January last year in the five major markets of the country, except in Abéché, where they registered an increase of 24 percent. By contrast, prices of rice increased sharply in the major producing areas. The migration of livestock from the Sahelian zone could trigger overgrazing and a shortage of pasture in the Sudanian zone. An assessment of the food supply situation in the at-risk zones conducted in early January estimated the at-risk population at 800 000 persons for whom about 40 000 tonnes of cereals are needed. About 700 000 people are also considered moderately vulnerable. The sale of 20 000 tonnes of cereals at subsidised prices is recommended.

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