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Dry spell in early May results in short-term stress for the 2022 B Season bean crop

  • Key Message Update
  • Burundi
  • May 2022
Dry spell in early May results in short-term stress for the 2022 B Season bean crop

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  • Key Messages
  • Key Messages
    • In the first half of May, below-average rainfall reportedly impacted bean development during the critical flowering and pod formation stage. According to key informants, the upcoming B Season harvest for beans is expected to be 5-10 percent below normal. The areas most affected by the dry spell in May where key informants expect a 10 percent below normal harvest in beans are primarily in localized areas of Bururi, Gitega, and Makamba provinces. However, the production of tuber, cereal, and banana crops, more tolerant to water stress, is expected to be close to normal. 

    • Food stocks from the favorable 2022 A Season harvest and early 2022 B Season harvest are supporting Minimal (IPC Phase 1) acute food insecurity outcomes across most of Burundi. The Northern and Eastern Lowlands livelihood zones continue to experience Stressed (IPC Phase 2) outcomes driven by below-normal local income-earning opportunities and dwindling household food stocks from the 2022 A Season. Additionally, increasing food prices due to increased demand and high fuel and transport prices are limiting household purchasing power. Households facing Stressed (IPC Phase 2) or worse outcomes are likely to engage in coping strategies such as relying on credit, buying cheaper and lower quality foods, and reducing meal sizes and the number of meals a day. 

    • In April, the national average of staple food prices increased by 4 to 30 percent compared to March. In particular, bean prices increased by 30 percent as household stocks declined and market demand increased. However, bean prices will likely begin declining in June with the start of the 2022 B Season harvest. Staple food prices are 4-56 percent higher than last year, with maize and rice prices 32 and 56 percent higher, respectively. The price increase in maize is likely driven by the maize import ban which is limiting market supply, increasing fuel and transportation prices and the increase in global market prices. Fuel prices have increased by 30 percent since January 2022, driven by increases in the global market prices. Increasing food and fuel prices are likely to lower household purchasing power; however, the start of the Season B harvest in June is likely to improve rural household food access. 

    • Humanitarian food assistance distributed in April is driving Minimal! (IPC Phase 1!) food security outcomes for the approximately 54,800 refugees from the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC) living in five refugee camps and two transit centers, 9,500 moderately malnourished pregnant and lactating women, and 11,230 children. Around 35,000 children and pregnant and lactating women received specialized nutritious food for stunting prevention. However, the around 3,000 returnees who arrived between February and March 2022 are likely to have exhausted the three-month rations they received upon arrival and will likely be Stressed (IPC Phase 2) until the B season harvest in June, with limited access to income. 

    This Key Message Update provides a high-level analysis of current acute food insecurity conditions and any changes to FEWS NET's latest projection of acute food insecurity outcomes in the specified geography. Learn more here.

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