GIEWS Country Brief: Angola 14-May-2012
FOOD SECURITY SNAPSHOT
Dry spell affects crops in coastal and northern provinces but average rains benefit crops in southern areas
Food security conditions aggravated in areas affected by a protracted dry period
Mixed prospects for current season cereal production
Harvesting of the 2011/12 main season maize crop was completed in April, while for millet, rice and sorghum harvesting will continue into June.
In the large crop producing provinces of Huambo, Huila and Bie, which collectively contribute to over 50 percent of the national cereal output, rains have been generally satisfactory during the main cropping period (September-March). Furthermore, in the southern provinces of Cunene and Cuando Cubango, which, along with Huila province, produce the bulk of the country’s sorghum and millet output, precipitation levels have been normal, benefiting crop development.
However, inadequate rains in 2012 in coastal areas and northern provinces resulted in a protracted dry spell that negatively impacted on crop performance. As a result, a reduction in maize production and household supplies is expected in the 2012/13 marketing year (April/March). For instance, in Bocoio municipality in the central province of Benguela, an estimated 55 000 hectares of maize and beans (representing about 17 percent of their total area in the province) were lost due to the dry spell. Similarly, below average rains in Cuanza Sul – a large maize producing province – resulted in poor vegetation conditions and cereal production is anticipated to decrease compared to 2011.
Overall, although official production estimates are not yet available, most southern areas are expected to attain an average harvest while northern areas and some central regions, including the provinces of Cuanza Sul and Benguela, production is anticipated to be poor.
Larger than anticipated cereal crop in 2011
Despite previous concerns about the negative impact of heavy rains during the 2010/11 cropping season, recently released production figures put the 2011 cereal crop at 1.4 million tonnes, some 19 percent up on 2010.
Food security conditions anticipated to deteriorate in parts
Following the anticipated reduction in cereal production in northern and in parts of central provinces, food security concerns were raised in the 2012/13 (April/March) marketing year. In response, the Government has initiated an emergency programme, amounting to USD 43 million, to provide food and water, as well as agricultural inputs to the affected families.