The output of the main "long rains" cereal crop, harvested until last October, was significantly reduced, particularly in Eastern, Central, Western and Nyanza Provinces due to drought, inadequate input supply and armyworm infestation in parts. Official estimates indicate maize output of about 2.1 million tonnes compared to 2.44 million tonnes in 1998 and 2.5 million tonnes average over the previous five years.
The food supply situation is critical in the northern, eastern and north-eastern pastoral districts, particularly in Turkana District, where erratic and insufficient rainfall has caused successive crop failures and were insufficient for adequate pasture and water supplies. An Emergency Operation was jointly approved in January 2000 by FAO and WFP for food assistance to 2.74 million drought affected people, worth US$ 43.4 million for a period of five months. The Government has also appealed in February for about US$62 million to combat the looming food shortage.