Malawi Food Security Outlook Update, February 2015

Situation Report
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Flooding and heavy rainfall disrupts cropping and displaces households, increasing the number of food insecure


  • The rainfall received in January was double the amount that is typically received during this month, resulting in flooding that displaced households, and damaged and destroyed crops and other assets. This continuous heavy rainfall and flooding has disrupted livelihoods for large populations in the central and southern parts of the country. An estimated 1 million people in 15 out of the 28 districts in the country are facing Stressed (IPC Phase 2) and Crisis (IPC Phase 3) food security outcomes. These outcomes are expected to continue until June, possibly extending into the next consumption period for some areas.

  • Current humanitarian assistance programming for flood-affected populations is ad hoc and average food prices across the country increased sharply in January because of increased demand. Because the flooding has disrupted livelihoods and limited income opportunities, people in the worst affected areas are experiencing food gaps due to constrained food access.

  • Regional and local weather forecasts indicate that rainfall for the remainder of the season will be normal to above normal, raising the chances of more flooding and waterlogging conditions which could reduce the yield of the next harvest.

  • According to reports from the Ministry of Agriculture, the country may face production shortfalls during the next consumption period. Current estimates indicate that over 105,000 MT of cropped maize has been lost due to the flooding and heavy rains across the country.