Burkina Faso + 1 more

GIEWS Country Brief: Burkina Faso 23-October-2020

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FOOD SECURITY SNAPSHOT

  1. Below‑average cereal output expected in 2020 due to climate events and persistent insecurity

  2. Above‑average harvest gathered in 2019, except in conflict‑affected zones

  3. Prices of coarse grains generally stable, but rising in conflict‑affected areas

  4. About 3.3 million people estimated to be severely food insecure during June‑August 2020

Below‑average cereal output expected in 2020 due to climate events and persistent insecurity

Harvesting operations of the 2020 main season crops are underway for rice, millet, maize and sorghum crops across the the country. Abundant rains allowed a timely start of planting activities in May in the south and west (Banfora, Bobo Dioulasso, Gaoua districts) and in May/June in the north. Precipitation amounts were above average in most areas since May, favouring crop germination, establishment and development as well as improving vegetation conditions. In addition, the Government supported farmers by providing improved seeds, fertilizers, pesticides as well as services of land use planning.

However, in September, below‑average rainfall and moisture deficits had a negative impact on the main season cereals in the southwestern part of the country. This situation will likely to result in a reduction of income through the declining opportunity of labour and the sale of production surpluses, increasing the food insecurity in these areas. Moreover, periods of heavy rains resulted in localized flooding in August and September across North Central Region, Kaya and Ouagadougou districts, causing human casualties, loss of livelihoods and damage to crops, livestock and infrastructures. This will likely reduce crop yields in lowland areas across the country. Futhermore, the widespread high levels of the conflict in the Sahel and North Central regions, coupled with and the effects of the COVID‑19 pandemic, limit the access to land and agricultural inputs, disrupting agricultural activities. In addition, localized Fall Armyworm (FAW) and desert locust outbreaks were reported, especially in South‑West, Cascades and Hauts Bassins regions. Overall, 2020 cereal crop production is estimated at below the last five‑year average.

Seasonal rains since July 2020 increased the quantity and quality of pastures and allowed the repleneshiment of surface water to satisfactory levels, improving livestock body conditions and enhancing animal market value in most parts of the country. However, in the Sahel and Center‑North regions, animals' access to natural resources is often limited by persistent insecurity, armed and community conflicts, theft and banditry. In accessible areas, high livestock concentration are observed, ensuing rapid degradation of fodder and water resource and leading to an early start of the lean pastoral lean season. The animal health situation is overall stable, with only some outbreaks of seasonal contagious epizootic diseases including Contagious Bovine Peripneumonia (CBPP), anthrax diseases, pasteurellosis, poultry diseases and Peste de Petits Ruminants.

Above‑average harvest gathered in 2019, except in conflict‑affected zones

Favourable rainfall in 2019 benefitted crop development in most parts of the country. The national cereal production in 2019 is estimated at an above‑average level of 5 million tonnes. However, production shortfalls were recorded in several areas due to a late onset of the rains, pockets of drought in September, excessive moisture conditions in October and some attacks by birds on crops in the Eastern and Western regions. Similarly, in conflict‑affected areas, most households have been unable to cultivate or have abandoned their fields due to increased security incidents, leading to a below‑average production in these areas.

Despite the above‑average cereal production in 2019, import requirements for the 2019/20 marketing year (November/October) are expected at a sligthly above‑average level due to strong demand by local traders aiming at replenishing their stocks.

Prices of coarse grains generally stable, but rising in conflict‑affected areas

Prices of coarse grains were stable at high levels between August and September 2020. This situation is explained by seasonally tight market availabilities, exacerbated by institutional purchases to support IDPs, the strong import demand by the Niger and the increased transportation costs due to poor road conditions during the rainy season. In particular, very high prices of grains are reported in the areas with a strong presence of IDPs, including the provinces of Djibo, Dori, Namounou and Diapaga due to the impact of the persistent insecurity situation.

About 3.3 million people estimated to be severely food insecure during June‑August 2020

According to the results of the updated Cadre Harmonisé analysis released by the Government last June, about 3.3 million people were estimated to need external food assistance during the June‑August 2020 period, well above the 687 000 food insecure people that were estimated for the same period in 2019. This sharp increase is mainly due to the deterioration of the security situation in the Centre‑Nord and Sahel regions as well as the impact of the restrictive measures to contain the COVID‑19 pandemic on households' ability to earn income. In the Centre‑Nord and Sahel regions, the exactions and threats of terrorist groups continue to lead to population displacements, further deteriorating the food security situation of the already vulnerable population. The majority of the displaced households are heavily dependent on humanitarian assistance to satisfy their basic needs. According to the UNHCR, as of September 2020, about 1 million people were internally displaced due to insecurity, with the majority of them living in Centre‑Nord Region. In addition, about 20 000 refugees, mostly from Mali, are still residing in the Sahel Region.