Malawi Food Security Outlook Update, August 2019

Situation Report
Originally published
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Crisis (IPC Phase 3) outcomes expected to emerge around October in southern areas


• Minimal (IPC Phase 1) outcomes prevail across most of the country.
However, some southern areas are in Stressed (IPC Phase 2) as a result of flooding associated with tropical cyclone Idai. In affected areas, some poor households experienced significant production losses. Additionally, labor availability and wages are below average, limiting household incomes and access to non-food needs such as agricultural inputs, health services, and school fees.

• Crisis (IPC Phase 3) outcomes are anticipated to emerge in some southern districts around October, persisting through at least January 2020. Households in these areas are expected to exhaust food stocks atypically early due to poor harvests. In addition, household income will most likely be below average due to below-average payment power of middle and better-off households and earnings from self-employment activities. This is likely to result in below-average purchasing power as food prices are expected to be abnormally high.

• In July, staple food prices continued to be significantly above average across all monitored markets. This is largely due to the unusually high demand from large-scale traders who are buying maize grain to supply institutions and processors. Maize grain shortages are anticipated as a result of below-average imports from Zambia and Mozambique. As such, large-scale traders are purchasing larger than normal quantities, abnormally early, contributing to the price increases. Increased demand from southern areas is also helping keep prices above average.