Key Message Update

Humanitarian food assistance needs will remain high through at least January 2021

September 2020

August - 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
National Parks/Reserves
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
Not mapped
Concentration of displaced people – hover over maps to view food security phase classifications for camps in Somalia, Sudan, and Uganda.
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 continues to monitor food security conditions in areas mapped in gray.
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
Not mapped
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
National Parks/Reserves
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
Not mapped
Concentration of displaced people – hover over maps to view food security phase classifications for camps in Somalia, Sudan, and Uganda.
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 continues to monitor food security conditions in areas mapped in gray.
FEWS NET Remote Monitoring countries use a colored outline to represent the highest IPC classification in areas of concern.

Key Messages

  • Crisis (IPC Phase 3) or worse outcomes persist across the East Africa region, driven by protracted conflict, long-term macroeconomic challenges, weather shocks, the economic impacts of COVID-19, and desert locust. Most recently, severe flooding led to significant crop losses in riverine areas in Ethiopia, Sudan, South Sudan, and Somalia and affected over 2.5 million people across the entire region. Meanwhile, the economic slowdown continues to limit household income and food access – particularly in urban areas – despite the easing of COVID-19 containment measures and movement restrictions. At the same time, staple food prices are trending above average in Ethiopia, South Sudan, and Sudan, which is reducing household purchasing power. Desert locust also remains a threat, with reports of significant damage to meher crops in Amhara, Tigray, and Oromia regions in Ethiopia.

  • Food insecurity remains most severe in Yemen, South Sudan, and Sudan, where widespread Crisis (IPC Phase 3), Crisis! (IPC Phase 3!), and Emergency (IPC Phase 4) outcomes reflect unprecedented humanitarian food assistance needs. In these countries, many households face large food consumption gaps or are engaging in extreme coping strategies due to the impact of conflict and insecurity, high and rising staple food prices linked to sharp depreciation of local currencies, and significant crop and livestock losses resulting from ongoing flooding. In South Sudan, Catastrophe (IPC Phase 5) is likely among some households in parts of Jonglei state, where conflict and two consecutive years of extensive floods have exhausted coping capacity. Famine (IPC Phase 5) is possible in a worst-case scenario in Yemen and in South Sudan.

  • According to UNHCR estimates in August, conflict and insecurity have dispaced an estimated 11.8 million people in Burundi, Ethiopia, Somalia, Sudan, South Sudan, and Yemen. An additional 3.65 million refugees from these countries are sheltering in settlements in Ethiopia, Kenya, Sudan, Uganda, Rwanda, and Tanzania. Most refugees and internally displaced populations have limited options to access food and income and are primarily dependent on humanitarian food assistance. However, funding shortfalls have led to significant ration cuts of 10-30 percent, with Kenya and Uganda facing cuts of up to 30 percent. Stressed! (IPC Phase 2!), Crisis (IPC Phase 3), and Crisis! (IPC Phase 3!) outcomes are prevalent in refugee and IDP settlements across the region, where a lack of livelihood options means household food security would rapidly deteriorate in the absence of food assistance.

  • The start of the main season harvests in September/October in Ethiopia, South Sudan, Sudan, and Karamoja sub region of Uganda are anticipated to somewhat alleviate the severity of food insecurity in some areas through early 2021. Several areas are anticipated to improve from Emergency (IPC Phase 4) to Crisis (IPC Phase 3) and from Crisis (IPC Phase 3) to Stressed (IPC Phase 2). However, Crisis (IPC Phase 3) is expected to persist in parts of Ethiopia and Sudan, while Crisis (IPC phase 3) and Emergency (IPC Phase 4) outcomes are anticipated in South Sudan. Below-normal crop and livestock production and low household income will continue to constrain household food availability and access in the context of prevailing conflict and macroeconomic challenges.

  • A forecast of below-average rainfall from October to December in the eastern Horn of Africa will most likely lead to below-average harvests in January/February and deterioration in livestock production in pastoral areas, specifically in southern and southeastern Ethiopia, Somalia, and northern and eastern Kenya. Long-range forecasts also predict an elevated likelihood of a below-average March to May 2021 rainfall season, due to sea surface temperature anomalies and a waning La Niña in early 2021. Drought conditions associated with consecutive below-average rainfall seasons are expected to lead to low household food availability, suppressed household income, high food and water prices, and an increase in resource-based conflict and atypical pastoral migration. High food assistance needs are anticipated in this region through most of 2021.

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