The current food security phase classification for the County is Crisis Phase (IPC Phase 3) in all the three livelihood zones, with exception of localized areas in northwestern parts which are in Stressed (IPC Phase 2). The proportion of households with acceptable food consumption score reduced from 68.8 percent in November to 25.9 percent in December, indicating worsening food consumption at the household level. The household Economic approach outcome indicates percentages of very poor, poor and middle at 78 percent of households who are facing survival and livelihood protection deficits. The nutrition situation, especially for children is showing a worsening trend, with more than 25 percent of children at risk of malnutrition as measured by the mid-upper arm circumference (MUAC < 135 mm). This is mainly due to reduced milk production and consumption at household level. Resultantly, about 30 – 40 percent of the population are facing acute food insecurity and in need of immediate humanitarian assistance.
There is limited availability of food stocks at household level that can last for less than a month due to below normal crop production, below normal milk production as a result of poor livestock body condition of livestock and mass outmigration of livestock, leaving very few livestock at household level for sale. Cereal and pulses are available in the markets but prices are high while household incomes are low. Most households have limited access to food from markets due to high food prices and limited purchasing power.
Water access has reduced due to low recharge level that increased distances to water sources from 7 km to 20 km, as well as low quality and quantity. The food preparation and hygiene in agro pastoral and pastoral zone is affected by water shortage and quality. The main drivers of food insecurity in the County are poor short rains performance and conflicts and insecurity related incidents.