Below-average 2021 crop production likely, with worst deficits expected in southern and western areas
Below-average precipitation in the 2020/21 season is expected to impact both irrigated and rainfed wheat production in parts of Afghanistan. Concern for irrigated production is highest in southern and western areas, while below-average rainfed production is expected in some northern and western areas. Below-average precipitation has also likely affected rangeland and pasture conditions in some northern and western areas. Worsening pasture conditions and fodder shortages are likely in worst-affected areas.
In rural areas, seasonal increases in availability of food and income from agricultural and livestock activities around the spring is expected to improve food security outcomes for many poor households. Improvement from Crisis (IPC Phase 3) to Stressed (IPC Phase 2) is expected in many areas with arrival of the first harvests around May/June in low elevation areas and around July/August in high elevation areas. However, areas significantly impacted by lower production in combination with the impacts of other drivers such as conflict are likely remain in—or deteriorate to—Crisis (IPC Phase 3) in the June to September 2021 period.
In urban areas, seasonal improvements in casual labor availability and wages during spring and summer will improve income-earning for many poor households. Additionally, agricultural and livestock production from nearby rural areas will contribute to seasonally lower food prices. As such, most poor households will likely experience some improvements in food access during this time, with improvement from Crisis (IPC Phase 3) to Stressed (IPC Phase 2) outcomes expected at the area level around June. However, below-average remittances and overall above-average food prices will likely continue constraining resources for many, with Crisis (IPC Phase 3) outcomes likely among worst-affected households in the absence of humanitarian assistance.
Levels of conflict and insecurity are likely to increase in the spring and summer months. This is expected to drive high levels of internal displacement in Afghanistan, particularly in the southern and southeastern provinces. Newly displaced households will be separated from assets and livelihoods, with food consumption gaps and Crisis (IPC Phase 3) outcomes likely unless humanitarian assistance is provided.