Key Message Update

Acute food insecurity will likely remain widespread despite gradual economic reopening

August 2020

July - September 2020

October 2020 - January 2021

IPC v3.0 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 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 v3.0 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 v3.0 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 v3.0 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 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.

Key Messages

  • The gradual reopening of local and global economies is facilitating some improvement in economic activity, leading to improved remittance flows and access to income sources. However, significant COVID-19 restrictions remain in place in the region. For example, the Haitian-Dominican border remains closed on the Dominican side, while public transportation remains suspended in several economic hubs in Guatemala. Poor urban and rural households continue to have difficulty meeting their food and non-food needs. Stressed (IPC Phase 2) and Crisis (IPC Phase 3) outcomes are prevalent.

  • The start of the average Primera harvest in Central America and below-average spring harvest in Haiti, coupled with relative improvements in market operations since the start of COVID-19, is driving marginal improvements in household food availability and access. The harvests are anticipated to drive a seasonal decline in staple food prices in Central America and to stabilize staple food prices in Haiti. Nevertheless, prices in key reference markets are expected to remain above the five-year average.

  • The upcoming Postrera harvest in Central America and the summer/fall and winter harvests in Haiti are unlikely to notably improve food security outcomes. In Central America, favorable rainfall and near-normal commercial agricultural activity is expected to result in near-average maize and bean harvests, but public transportation restrictions will limit poor households’ ability to access labor opportunities on cash crop and coffee farms. In Haiti, planted area is expected to be below normal since farmers will have reduced seeds and income after the preceding spring harvest. Further, in Haiti, fuel scarcity and continued depreciation of the HTG is anticipated to lead to increases in staple food prices.

  • In July, the International Regional Organization for Agricultural Health (OIRSA) issued an alert on the outbreak of the Central American locust (Schistocerca piceifrons) in Guatemala and Mexico.  To date, the Guatemala Ministry of Agriculture has implemented effective control measures and there is no significant damage to crops. Based on early monitoring and surveillance activities so far, damage to crops and rangeland in Central America is currently expected to remain low.

  • Given that poor urban and rural households will continue to have difficulty earning enough income to meet their food and non-food needs, Stressed (IPC Phase 2) and Crisis (IPC Phase 3) outcomes will likely persist in the post-harvest periods in Central America and Haiti. Crisis (IPC Phase 3) is expected in the Honduran and Guatemalan Dry Corridor, the coffee-growing livelihood zone in El Salvador, and areas in Haiti that are worst-affected by below-average crop production and high food prices. Additionally, some poor urban households who work in the informal sector will likely stay in Crisis (IPC Phase 3).

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 approximately 30 countries. Implementing team members include NASA, NOAA, USDA, USGS, and CHC-UCSB, along with Chemonics International Inc. and Kimetrica.
Learn more About Us.

Link to United States Agency for International Development (USAID)Link to the United States Geological Survey's (USGS) FEWS NET Data PortalLink to U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA)
Link to National Aeronautics and Space Administration's (NASA) Earth ObservatoryLink to the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration's (NOAA) National Weather Service, Climage Prediction CenterLink to the Climate Hazards Center - UC Santa BarbaraLink to KimetricaLink to Chemonics