Kenya Food Security Update, December 2009

Situation Report
Originally published
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The 2009 short rains have been characterized to date by a lengthy dry spell in November in critical areas of the country including the drought-affected southeast and coastal marginal agricultural areas as well as in the northwestern pastoral areas. While rains re-started in the marginal lowlands at the end of November and continued into early December, concerns remain regarding the impact of the dry spell on crop production in the marginal cropping areas.

Food insecurity is likely to increase in the northwestern pastoral districts, including Turkana, western Marsabit, and parts of Samburu, Baringo, and West Pokot, due to the impacts of poor rains in November through the first week of December.

National maize output over the July 2009 - June 2010 marketing year is expected to be at least 25 percent below the annual short-term average of about 3 million MT, due to lowered long rains production and likely short rains crop losses.

A severe outbreak of cholera has resulted in nearly 300 deaths in just three months in the larger Nairobi, Turkana, West Pokot, Lamu, Marsabit, Kwale, Kitui, and Kericho districts.