The Famine Early Warning Systems Network (FEWS NET) monitors trends in staple food prices in countries vulnerable to food insecurity. For each FEWS NET country and region, the Price Bulletin provides a set of charts showing monthly prices in the current marketing year in selected urban centers and allowing users to compare current trends with both five-year average prices, indicative of seasonal trends, and prices in the previous year.
Maize and cassava are the main staple foods consumed by households in the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC), and is usually prepared in a dough-like consistency called fufu. The country is heavily dependent on imported maize, as local production of both maize and cassava is typically unable to cover local demand. Rice is the third most important staple food and is mainly consumed in larger urban areas, while beans is used in both urban and rural areas as an accompaniment to cereal-based dishes. Households in rural areas depend heavily on palm oil for food preparation. Maize, cassava, rice and beans are sold year round in key reference markets in Eastern DRC. Fuel prices and the quality of road infrastructure linking major rural production zones to large consumer markets are among some of the key factors that influence staple food prices in Eastern DRC.