Yemen Food Security Outlook, October 2015 to March 2016
Deteriorating outcomes likely with continued reductions in income and increased food prices
In Yemen, important information gaps remain. Nonetheless, recent data from WFP mVAM surveys, household interviews, a UNICEF SMART survey, and NGO partners all confirm that a significant population faces severe acute food insecurity. These data, along with information on water availability, food prices, and income, also suggest that food security has deteriorated substantially since last year.
It is likely that significant populations are facing Emergency (IPC Phase 4) outcomes, especially those trapped in active conflict areas or displaced. The risk of acute malnutrition also remains high due to the high disease burden and reduced access to health care. Although information is limited, it is likely that at least six million people are currently in need of food assistance.
Although vital assistance is being provided by humanitarian partners, the scale of current needs is well beyond response capacity.
Available evidence indicates that most typical sources of income for poor households have been adversely affected during the conflict, while food prices in most areas have been well above pre-crisis levels. A continuation of current trends of reduced household income and increased food prices could lead to deteriorating food security outcomes in the coming months.
In late October, reports indicated that the Yemeni rial (YER) began to depreciate against the U.S. dollar (USD) and other currencies, at unofficial rates. With Yemen’s heavy reliance on food imports, including for 85 percent of its cereals consumption, depreciation of the rial would likely put further upward pressure on food prices.