Late start of the rains jeopardizes spring crops
The early depletion of food supplies from bad harvests, the growing dependence for poor households on market, and a reduction in agricultural employment opportunities have contributed to the increasingly widespread acute food insecurity throughout the country. Many municipalities are currently in Crisis (Phase 3, IPC 2.0).
The size of the total cultivated area for this growing season will be sharply reduced. In addition to the late start of the rains, farmers are faced with a shortage of seeds, where seed prices are as much as 20 to 30 percent above the five-year average. Early crops planted in February in certain parts of the Southeast are withered, which will definitely translate into lower yields.
Poor rural households reliant both on farming and on wage labor from agricultural activities are especially hard hit by the late start-of-season. Their situation is growing increasingly unstable as food prices on most markets across the country continue to climb. Forced to intensify or to resort to irreversible survival strategies and exorbitant loans, they are still unable to meet their basic food needs.