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The El Niño induced drought resulted in 15 percent drop in regional cereal production from 29 million tonnes in 2015 to 26 million tonnes in 2016 which is about 11 percent decrease compared to the five-year average1 . Southern parts of Malawi, Mozambique and Madagascar as well as most of Zimbabwe, Lesotho, Botswana and Namibia have been significantly affected by this drought.
Approximately 40.8 million people (22.5% of rural population) will be food insecure in Southern Africa up to March 2017.
An extensive regional scale crop failure is expected in Southern Africa following an extremely dry cropping season. Consequently, the current regional cereal deficit of 7.9 million tonnes will increase steeply and unprecedented food price movements will continue through to the next harvest season. This will aggravate the food and nutrition security, health and HIV situation in the region.
More countries declare a state of disaster due to drought
Despite increased rainfall in southern parts of the region in January, most of the region continues to experience dryness into February, diminishing any hopes of crop recovery. The El Niño-induced drought is expected to result in below-average 2016 production in most of the region, including the top maize surplus-producing countries, South Africa and Zambia.
Area cropped for the 2015/16 season is expected to be below average due to dry conditions Zimbabwe Food Security Outlook Update