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Country Briefs

  United Republic of Tanzania

Reference Date: 28-September-2021


  1. Above‑average cereal output of 2021 “Msimu” and “Masika” harvests

  2. Prices of maize at low levels due to adequate domestic availabilities

  3. Food security recently improved with commercialization of “Msimu” and “Masika” crops

  4. About 253 000 refugees and asylum seekers from Burundi and Democratic Republic of Congo face difficult food security conditions

Above‑average cereal output of 2021 “Msimu” and “Masika” harvests

In southern and central uni‑modal rainfall areas, the 2021 major “Msimu” harvest was completed in July and crop production is estimated at above‑average levels. Cumulative rainfall amounts between November 2020 and April 2021 are estimated at 5‑25 percent above average, with a positive impact on yields. In early May, at the beginning of the harvesting operations, vegetation conditions were good across most cropping areas (ASI map).

In northern and northeastern bi‑modal rainfall areas, harvesting of the 2021 main season “Masika” crops was concluded in August and cereal production was above average due to a generally favourable performance of the March to May seasonal rains. However, in northeastern Arusha, Kilimanjaro, Tanga and Pwani regions, delayed and below‑average rains had a negative impact on yields.

Between 24 and 26 April 2021, the country was hit by Tropical Cyclone Jobo, which brought torrential rains triggering floods in Zanzibar Island and in Kilimanjaro, Manyara, Shinyanga, Kagera, Dar es Salaam, Morogoro and Mbeya regions. The floods affected about 30 000 people, with damage to infrastructures and localized losses of “Masika” and “Msimu” crops.

In bi‑modal rainfall areas, land preparation of the minor “Vuli” season crops in underway and planting will commence with the establishment of the October to December rainy season.

According to the latest weather forecast by the Greater Horn of Africa Climate Outlook Forum (GHACOF), rainfall amounts are expected to be below average between October and December 2021. This may have a negative impact on the performance of the 2021 “Vuli” harvest, to be gathered at the beginning of 2022, as well as on planting and germination of the 2022 “Msimu” crops.

Aggregate cereal production in 2021 (including an average output of the minor “Vuli” harvest) is tentatively forecast at about 12 million tonnes, about 13 percent above the average of the previous five years.

Prices of maize at low levels due to adequate domestic availabilities

Prices of maize declined by 30 to 45 percent between April and July 2021 when the newly harvested “Msimu” and “Masika” crops increased market supplies. Prices levelled off in August in markets located in rural areas, while they seasonally increased by about 10 to 20 percent in large urban centres, including Arusha and Dar Es Salaam, due to sustained local demand. However, prices in August were between 25 and 50 percent below their year‑earlier levels due to overall adequate domestic availabilities.

Food security situation generally favourable

The country is generally food secure. The food security situation has seasonally improved in recent months with the commercialization of the newly harvested 2021 “Msimu” and “Masika” crops.

As of late June 2021, about 253 000 refugees and asylum seekers from Burundi and the Democratic Republic of the Congo are residing in the country. About 84 percent of the refugees and asylum seekers live in camps in western Kigoma, Katavi and Tabora regions, including about 130 000 people residing in Nyarugusu Camp in Kigoma Region, near the border with Burundi. Most refugees and asylum seekers lack adequate access to livelihood opportunities and rely entirely on humanitarian assistance.

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