Tropical Cyclone Ana hit much of Southern Africa in late January, causing the displacement and destruction of crops across central and northern Madagascar and Mozambique, southern and northern Zimbabwe, and southern Malawi. According to OCHA, over 62,000 households in Madagascar, over 195,000 households in Malawi, and more than 180,000 households in Mozambique were affected by the impacts of the winds, heavy rains, and damage caused by Tropical Cyclone Ana. In Zimbabwe, some impacts were reported but were not as significant. In all the affected countries, there are reports of crop damage that will likely negatively impact the 2022 harvest. In February, Tropical Cyclones hit Madagascar, Mozambique, and neighboring areas on a nearly weekly basis.
Much of the region received moderate to heavy rainfall in January after a very poor start to the season. However, despite improved rainfall, deficits are still present in some areas of the region. In Malawi and southern Madagascar, rainfall continues to be below-average, where historic rainfall deficits were still present at the end of January. These conditions have affected planting activities and resulted in poor cropping conditions with lower-than-normal area cropped. Similar conditions have been reported for some areas of central and southern Mozambique, as well as extreme southern parts of Zimbabwe where rainfall has been below-average. These conditions will likely lead to below-average production in affected areas.
As the peak of the lean season is ongoing, many households are reliant on markets as food stocks have been depleted. Households in southern Madagascar are among the most food-insecure populations in the region due to consecutive years of drought. Households in these areas are currently relying significantly on humanitarian assistance and are experiencing Crisis! (IPC Phase 3!) and Stressed! (IPC Phase 2!) outcomes. Households in most conflict-affected areas of Mozambique and DRC are currently experiencing Crisis (IPC Phase 3) outcomes. In these areas, livelihood activities are disrupted, notably among displaced populations. Crisis (IPC Phase 3) outcomes are currently ongoing in southern parts of Malawi, Zimbabwe, and central and southern parts of Mozambique, where last year’s production was affected by below-average rainfall.