Persistent dry spells result in significant crop failure in Karonga district
Reports from the Karonga district Agriculture Office (DAO) confirm that prolonged dry spells during the critical stage of crop development resulted in extensive crop wilting in parts of Karonga district in Central Karonga (CKA) livelihood zone, and this is expected to result in lower agriculture output this harvest. As a result, poor households are likely to be Stressed (IPC Phase 2) during the April to September period.
Acute food insecurity across the rest of the country will be Minimal (IPC Phase 1) from April to September with increased household food availability from the harvests.
Second round crop estimates by the Ministry of Agriculture have been completed, but the official figures have not been released yet. Unofficial agricultural and meteorological data using Water Requirement Satisfaction Index (WRSI) models, suggests that the 2013/14 harvest will be adequate enough to meet national maize consumption needs.
Consistent with seasonal trends during harvest time, maize prices across the country have dropped significantly. Typical informal cross border trading flows are expected with Mozambique, Zambia, and Tanzania during the outlook period. It is unlikely that the Government of Malawi (GoM) will lift the formal maize export ban that is currently in place.