East Africa: Armyworm Infestation - Mar 2017Ongoing
As millions of east African farmers seek to recover from a devastating drought, they face a new threat – the fall armyworm. The pest has been recently detected in Kenya and is suspected to have entered the country from Uganda. It is also known to be present in Burundi, Ethiopia and Rwanda. The fall armyworm was first reported in western Kenya by farmers in March 2017, and immediately confirmed by the Kenya Plant Health Inspectorate Service and Kenya Agricultural and Livestock Research Organisation. The initial counties infested were Busia, TransNzoia, Bungoma, Uasin Gishu and Nandi. (FAO, 25 Apr 2017)
As of 23 May, Fall Armyworm has affected more than 143,000 hectares of land in major maize and wheat-producing counties [in Kenya]. [FAO] and the Ministry of Agriculture have adopted a planning response figure of 800,000 hectares, which requires US$33.5 million for pesticides and awareness campaigns in the medium term. US$6.6 million is required for an immediate response. (OCHA, UNCT Kenya, 23 May 2017)
In collaboration with [FAO] and other development partners, the Government of Ethiopia has intensified efforts to protect major maize growing areas from the ravage of the fall armyworm. The fall armyworm, which first arrived in Africa in 2016, was intercepted on a few hectares of irrigated maize fields in southern Ethiopia in the last week of February 2017. It has now covered about 52 962 hectares in 144 districts in three of the major maize-growing regional states – Gambella, Oromia and Southern Nations Nationalities and Peoples’ Region (SNNPR)...The Government of Ethiopia allocated nearly USD 2 million to tackle the problem. (FAO, 30 May 2017)
[F]all armyworm, which has caused extensive damage to maize crops in southern Africa, has spread to the east and has worsened the situation. In Kenya, the pest has so far affected about 200 000 hectares of crops, and in Uganda more than half the country's 111 districts are affected. (FAO, 14 Jul 2017)
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FOOD SECURITY SNAPSHOT
Favourable prospects for 2017 main “meher” season
Output of 2017 “belg” secondary season harvest estimated at below-average levels due to erratic rainfall
Fall Armyworm infestations affected crops in 65 percent of country’s districts; Government, with technical and financial support of FAO, undertook appropriate control measures
Uganda hosts the largest population of refugees and asylum-seekers in Africa. As of November 2017 nearly 1.4 million refugees and asylum-seekers have sought shelter in Uganda, including more than 1 million South Sudanese. Furthermore, 61 percent of the refugee population in Uganda is under 18 years of age.
Summary of the revision made to the Emergency Plan of Action
This update provides an overview on Kenya Red Cross Society actions for the response to date and seek for a timeframe extension for an additional three months until 28 February 2018. The second appeal revision which was done in March 2017 was to increase the budget to 25,062,572 Swiss Francs and target beneficiaries to 1,033,300. The emergency appeal is currently 26 percent funded (CHF 6,453,908).
Following the beginning of the conflict in South Sudan in 2013, the town of Wadakona, Manyo County, has been contested by various armed actors until March 2015, when it fell under government control.
Since then, spillovers of fighting in closeby areas of Manyo County has reached Wadakona on occasions, further triggering displacement. In February 2017, fighting reached Wadakona and remaining civilians were evacuated to Renk.1 Most recently, in June 2017, fighting took place in the nearby towns of Ghabat, Kuek and Kola.
- Government and partners continue to respond to the rising needs of conflictinduced IDPs in Oromia and Somali regions, but humanitarian needs surpass available resources.
Government and partners responding to needs of conflict-induced IDPs, gap remains high
I. INTRODUCTION AND KEY TAKEAWAYS
The benchmark US wheat price declined in October mostly because of higher supply prospects while maize quotations firmed due to rain-induced harvest delays. International rice prices strengthened in October, mainly reflecting seasonally tight Japonica and fragrant supplies.
Drought Situation & EW Phase Classification
- Showers were recorded with dry days intervals in the first dekad and second dekad of the month mostly in the Mixed farming zone with some areas of the county recording dry days during the month.
- Vegetation condition: The 3 month vegetation condition index (VCI) for the County is 33.64 depicting a moderate vegetation deficit.
Socio Economic Indicators (Impact Indicators)\
Drought Situation & EW Phase Classification
The county experienced rainfall during the month under review with a distribution in time of 10-13 days. In reference to Nasukuta rainfall station, the cumulative rainfall for the 6-month period (April-September 2017) represents 90% of the total rainfall received normally for the period.
In response to the worsening humanitarian context, the Government and humanitarian partners have increased the funding appeal of the Humanitarian Requirements Document to $1.4 billion. The revision took into account the increased needs of those internally displaced by conflict and drought.
The Government of Ethiopia and humanitarian partners are preparing for the next humanitarian needs assessment, tentatively scheduled to start third week of November. The findings will inform the humanitarian plans for 2018.
Early start of second season harvest improves national food security
High food prices, trade restrictions, and Fall Armyworm heighten food insecurity
The Government and partners developed an ‘HRD Status Update’, highlighting all outstanding Humanitarian Requirements Document Mid-Year Review requirements against revised sector requirements to address new needs since August.
Cluster continues providing ES/NFI and cash-based assistance to displaced households, but needs surpass the ongoing response.
Some 110,000 displaced school children in 305 schools in Oromia and Somali regions are in dire need of assistance.
International prices of wheat increased in September mostly because of weather-related concerns, while maize quotations fell further on crop harvest pressure. International rice prices remained generally firm, supported by seasonally tight availabilities of fragrant rice and strong demand for higher quality Indica supplies.
Crops that feed 200 million people at risk from destructive march of fall armyworm, as agriculture experts call for urgent action
The crops that 200 million people rely on in Africa are under threat from a caterpillar that is spreading throughout the continent, agriculture experts have warned.
Read more on the Guardian.
Deyr rains perform poorly in early October in southern and central Somalia
The Deyr (October to December) season is delayed over southern and central Somalia, with rainfall totals less than 80 percent of average across many areas. In southeastern Ethiopia, rainfall has been average to slightly above average, but concentrated within 1-2 days of rainfall.
Since the revision of the Humanitarian Requirements Document (HRD) in August 2017, the humanitarian context in Ethiopia has continued to evolve which has led the Government and humanitarian partners to further adjust the HRD requirements. In the food sector the needs have been revised slightly upwards to accommodate an increase in the number of beneficiaries through the inclusion of 4 million former Productive Safety Net Programme (PSNP) clients in the HRD.
1.7 million people are facing emergency food insecurity in the country out of which 45,000 people are facing catastrophe or famine in Unity and Jonglei States.
The number of food insecure is expected to rise to 6.0 million during the peak of the lean season.
Fall armyworm crop destruction in Greater Central Equatoria and Greater Bahr El Gazal is likely to impact negatively on harvest prospects for the 2017/2018 agricultural season
The world’s anti-hunger organizations have an opportunity to prevent widespread destruction of African crops by stopping the spread of an insect, warn three of the most respected thinkers on international agriculture.
However, the international community must act swiftly, in cooperation, and on a large scale to do so. The fall armyworm reportedly has a foothold in 28 nations in Africa, and it feeds on crops that include maize, which more than 200 million Africans depend on for food security.