Seasonal Monitor

Normal to above-normal rainfall could improve the spring harvest in Haiti

December 2013

IPC 2.0 Acute Food Insecurity Phase

1: Minimal
2: Stressed
3: Crisis
4: Emergency
5: Famine
Would likely be at least one phase worse without current or programmed humanitarian assistance
FEWS NET classification is IPC-compatible. IPC-compatible analysis follows key IPC protocols but does not necessarily reflect the consensus of national food security partners.

IPC 2.0 Acute Food Insecurity Phase

1: Minimal
2: Stressed
3+: Crisis or higher
Would likely be at least one phase worse without
current or programmed humanitarian assistance
FEWS NET classification is IPC-compatible. IPC-compatible analysis follows key IPC protocols but does not necessarily reflect the consensus of national food security partners.
FEWS NET Remote Monitoring countries use a colored outline to represent the highest IPC classification in areas of concern.

IPC 2.0 Acute Food Insecurity Phase

Presence countries:
1: Minimal
2: Stressed
3: Crisis
4: Emergency
5: Famine
Remote monitoring
countries:
1: Minimal
2: Stressed
3+: Crisis or higher
Would likely be at least one phase worse without
current or programmed humanitarian assistance
FEWS NET Remote Monitoring countries use a colored outline to represent the highest IPC classification in areas of concern.

Key Messages

  • Normal to above-normal rainfall is expected for the next three months in Haiti, likely improving soil moisture conditions for the subsequent spring season in 2014.

  • Good rainfall distribution during the Postrera season has been favorable for the development of staple grains crops in Central America.

  • The quantity and distribution of rainfall forecast for the Apante season is average for the main staple grain-producing areas; therefore, crop development is expected to be normal through the end of the harvest in February.

Seasonal Progress

Continuous rainfall deficits in Haiti over the past four months have affected crop yields in Gressier, Léogane, Jacmel, La Vallée, Grand-Goâve, Côtes de Fer, Bainet, and Cabaret (Figure 1). A seasonal decrease in rainfall will begin in December due to the start of the dry season over Haiti. Yet, for the following quarter (December to February), the forecast indicates normal to above-normal rainfall, with only occasional light precipitation (Figure 2).

In northern Nicaragua, particularly in the department of Estelí, the Postrera harvest of red beans will start at the beginning of December. Average yields of 16 to 18 quintals per hectare are expected in areas affected by a late start of the rainy season. In non-affected areas in the north of Nicaragua, 30 quintals per hectare will be harvested. According to MAGFOR, Postrera production is expected to provide 2 million quintals of red beans, representing an increase of almost 30 percent in both production and area planted compared to last year’s Postrera. However, the Apante season in February will be the most significant for harvesting beans, yielding approximately 160,000 hectares of beans (89,000 and 119,000 hectares were sown during Primera and Postrera, respectively). A reduction in the price of red beans is expected for the upcoming weeks in northern Nicaragua as the harvest is already underway.

In Honduras, the government expects an average production of white maize and red beans, mainly for national consumption. In 2014, the Secretary of Agriculture and Livestock (SAG) will implement a change in cropping areas and dedicate some area planted to soy crops. The area designated will depend of the number of farmers that want participate. The Taiwanese government will offer funds to support this activity. The impetus for adding soy is to help farmers diversify crop production in order to provide alternative income sources that can enable households to buy food.

In Guatemala, good weather conditions have allowed staple grain agricultural activities to progress on schedule during the Postrera season, ending in mid-December. Well-distributed rainfall helped reduce potential significant seasonal hazards such as pests and diseases. A normal cold front season is expected, from December 2013 to March 2014. To date, according to current reports, low temperatures have affected yields in some localized vegetable-growing areas in high elevations, particularly in the departments of Sololá, Totonicapán, and Quetzaltenango, as is typical for this time of the year.

Eastern Pacific equatorial Sea Surface Temperature (SST) anomalies are below average (i.e. a deviation of 0°C to -0.5°C). There is a high probability that these ENSO-neutral conditions will last until January 2014. With the likelihood of SSTs decreasing after April 2014, the forecast indicates a normal start to the rainy season in mid-April in Central America and the Caribbean.

About this Report

The seasonal monitor, produced by the FEWS NET USGS regional scientist and FEWS NET Regional Technical Manager, updates rainfall totals, the impact on production, and the short-term forecast. It is produced every 20 days during the production season. Find more remote sensing information here.

 

About FEWS NET

The Famine Early Warning Systems Network is a leading provider of early warning and analysis on food insecurity. Created by USAID in 1985 to help decision-makers plan for humanitarian crises, FEWS NET provides evidence-based analysis on some 28 countries. Implementing team members include NASA, NOAA, USDA, and USGS, along with Chemonics International Inc. and Kimetrica. Read more about our work.

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