Lesotho Remote Monitoring Update, August 2019

Situation Report
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Population in Crisis (IPC Phase 3) is increasing as the lean season approaches


• As food stocks from the last harvest are depleted and the lean season approaches, the number of households facing food consumption gaps is increasing. After September, most households in Lesotho are expected to be in Crisis (IPC Phase 3). These outcomes are will likely continue through the peak of the lean season in January 2020. The lean season started atypically early and is likely to be more severe than last year.

• According to FEWS NET/USGS, the start of the 2019/20 rainy season in Lesotho and other parts of Southern Africa is most likely to be late and below average. This is expected to affect the availability of income-earning labor opportunities in agriculture as households prioritize food expenditures over agricultural inputs and labor.

• Despite domestic cereal shortfalls, maize meal prices have been stable since April and will likely remain stable through September (Figure 2). However, FEWS NET price projections indicate that prices will likely rise in October. South Africa is expected to have a below-average surplus in 2019/20, however imports will likely offset any domestic deficits in Lesotho.