Kenya Food Security Outlook Update, March 2013

Improvement in food security due to February to March harvest

KEY MESSAGES

• The food insecure population declined to 1.1 million in February 2013 from 2.1 million in August 2012 according to the Kenya Food Security Steering Group (KFSSG) 2013 short rains assessment. This was attributed to near average short rains crop production and improved grazing conditions compared to the 2012 August to September lean season.
• However, abnormally high February temperatures have accelerated the deterioration of grazing conditions and led to a decline in milk production in pastoral livelihood zones. Accelerated deterioration of grazing conditions is likely to result in deterioration of the food security through April.
• Household food stocks from the February to March harvest are likely to last through June in the southeastern and coastal livelihood zones. However, poor storage facilities and immediate cash needs may drive early selling and result in earlier than normal depletion of short rains food stocks and therefore, constraining household food access by May.

Food Security Summary:

The food insecure population declined to 1.1 million in February 2013 from 2.1 million in August 2012 according to the Kenya Food Security Steering Group (KFSSG) 2013 short rains assessment. This was attributed to near average short rains crop production and improved grazing conditions compared to the 2012 August to September lean season.

However, abnormally high February temperatures have accelerated the deterioration of grazing conditions and led to a decline in milk production in pastoral livelihood zones. Accelerated deterioration of grazing conditions is likely to result in deterioration of the food security through April.

Household food stocks from the February to March harvest are likely to last through June in the southeastern and coastal livelihood zones. However, poor storage facilities and immediate cash needs may drive early selling and result in earlier than normal depletion of short rains food stocks and therefore, constraining household food access by May.