Malawi Food Security Outlook October 2013 to March 2014
• In most of the south, the lean period will start in October as normal but areas of the central and northern regions began the lean period three months earlier than normal as a result of poor rainfall and poor harvests in the 2012/13 season.
• Although response programming is underfunded, assistance started in October and is expected to roll out in 12 of the worst affected districts on time. This will result in improved food security outcomes among poor households in the worst affected areas in parts of the southern, central and northern regions. As a result of this assistance, Minimal food insecurity (IPC 1!) outcomes are projected from October to December.
• Without additional response funding, assistance is likely to drop off in December or January. This may result in Crisis (IPC Phase 3) outcomes in the north, south, and central regions during the January to March 2014 period.
• Current seasonal rainfall forecasts are pointing to a normal start of season in November and December. Normal to above normal total rainfall is also projected for the season. However, labor demand may be lower than usual because last year’s poor harvests reduced the ability of wealthier and middle-income households to hire labor this season.