Kenya Food Security Outlook, January to June 2013
Resurgent rains in late December and January lead to slight crop recovery in the Southeast
• The food insecure population continues to be 2.1 million people, but this number is likely to increase following the poor performance of the October to December short rains in parts of the southeastern and coastal marginal mixed farming zones. The Short Rains Assessment (SRA) 2013 will establish the total population in need of humanitarian assistance by March.
• Resurgent rains in the southeastern and coastal marginal agricultural livelihood zones in late December and early January slightly improved water access and livestock conditions, and they led to the recovery of some crops. However, the food security situation is still fragile with many areas at a high risk of deteriorating into Crisis (IPC Phase 3) or remaining in Crisis (IPC Phase 3) through March. The chance of rains not continuing until crops reach maturity is relatively high.
• Maize prices are slowly declining as the long rains harvest reaches markets, but they remain above average. In the marginal agricultural and pastoral livelihood zones, maize prices are still increasing. Poor households have reduced access to food because of reduced income from casual labor and high maize prices.
• The March to May long rains are likely to be average to below average. The high chance of high temperatures in the meantime means that grazing conditions are likely to degrade quicker than usual during the January to March dry season. This would likely further increase food prices as demand for market purchases in pastoral areas rises.