According to the acute food insecurity analysis update in Zambia for the February-March 2021 projection period, an estimated 1.73 million people (25% of the analysed population) are likely to face high levels of acute food insecurity (IPC Phase 3 or above). This includes around 1.5 million people in Crisis (IPC Phase 3) and around 240,000 people in Emergency (IPC Phase 4), who will require urgent humanitarian action to reduce food gaps, protect and restore livelihoods.
The projection period coincides with the lean season in Zambia when most households rely on the market for food whilst poor households rely on casual labour opportunities for food and income. The impact of COVID-19 as well as dry spells and flooding in selected areas have reduced the capacity of these households to access food. Other factors that have affected these households include above average commodity prices and pests, such as the African Migratory Locusts.
However, due to the fair performance of the season in some areas, it is anticipated that households will rely on the pre-mature harvesting of crops as well as greens for both consumption and income sources. Out of the 64 districts analysed, 53 are classified in Crisis (IPC Phase 3) and 11 in Stressed (IPC Phase 2).