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Sahel and West Africa Food Security Outlook Update December 2011

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Situation Report
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Food Insecurity in the Sahel: Localized IPC Phase 3-Crisis likely after March 2012

  • FEWS NET analysis shows that acute food insecurity in West Africa will reach IPC Phase 3: Crisis level between March and August 2012 in agropastoral areas of Mauritania, Mali,
    Niger, and Chad. The extent and severity of the expected food security conditions are not atypical for any recent year in the region, except for Mali.

  • Households most affected by this acute food insecurity crisis are mainly very poor and to some extent poor households in eastern and central Mauritania, western and central Mali, western Niger, and the Sahelian zone of Chad. These households account for about 60% of the population in the affected areas. Targeted assistance will be needed to cover their unmet food needs between March and September 2012.

  • In terms of the geographic scope, size of affected populations, and severity of the acute food insecurity crisis in the Sahel, the crisis in the eastern Horn of Africa remains a much more serious problem, and will remain so for 2012.

  • Even with the agricultural shocks this season in West Africa, the Sahel region is expecting an average cereal production of 16.6 million MT. Regional trade will play a key role in alleviating food insecurity in the region for the 2012 lean season.