Southern Africa - Regional Food Security Update, March 2011

Lesotho

- Following the joint rapid assessment led by DMA, the World Bank is assisting the country to undertake Post Disaster Needs Assessment to further understand the impact of heavy rains on different sectors.

- Poor crop production is anticipated this year.

Madagascar

- Tropical Storm BINGIZA passed over the southern of Madagascar before exited through the South-East costs in mid-February. Damage has rather touched infrastructures than crops.

- After a stable price of rice in January, the rise has resumed.

Malawi

- Average maize price/Kg remains the same from January and February

- Nsanje and Chikhwawa Districts to continue to receive WFP food assistance for three months until the end of the lean season.

- Prolonged dry spells has affected parts of the Southern and Central Regions, threatening prospects of bumper yield should it continue

Mozambique

- Government downgraded the alert status from orange to red following an overall decrease in the hydrometric levels in all river basins.

- Floods and storms affected a total of 12,952 families and 33,841 ha of planted area. About 22,200 ha are considered lost.

- The Emergency Food Security and Nutrition Assessment (EFSA) was postponed to mid March 2011

Namibia

- Concern in northern Namibia; flooding has started to occur in the Oshana region.

- The flood wave in the upper Zambezi River is stabilizing below 6.50m at Katima Mulilo.

- National household food security situation remains satisfactory with the exception of Caprivi and Kavango regions

South Africa

- The expected production of maize is 11,044 million tons, which is 13.8% less than the 12,815 million tons in the previous season.

Swaziland

- Fuel prices (both petrol and diesel) increased by SZL 0.80 per litre

- Maize is stagnating due to the prolonged dry spells from January 2011

Zambia

- The food security situation in the country has remained fairly stable owing to the surplus production during the 2010/11 consumption season

- Continued opening of the Kariba Spillway gates has affected most of crop lands in lower Zambezi basin

Zimbabwe

- Production prospects in Masvingo, Manicaland, Matebeleland South and southern parts of Midland Province have been severely impacted on by the long dry spell from end of January 2011.

- The cost of the food basket has increased by 17% from September 2010 to January 2011 making it increasingly inaccessible to the poor.

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