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Above-average rainfall improves Season B production prospects

  • Remote Monitoring Report
  • Rwanda
  • May 2015
Above-average rainfall improves Season B production prospects

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  • Key Messages
  • Projected outlook through September 2015
  • Key Messages
    • Poor households in the Bugesera Cassava, East Agropastoral and the East Congo Nile Highland Subsistence Farming Zones currently face Stressed (IPC Phase 2) acute food insecurity due to the combination of a poor start to Season B, yield reductions resulting from excessive rainfall in April and May, and labor and income losses accruing from reduced livestock production. An estimated 25,000 refugees from Burundi are currently in need of humanitarian assistance.

    • Poor households in the Bugesera Cassava, East Agropastoral and the East Congo Nile Highland Subsistence Farming Zones currently face Stressed (IPC Phase 2) acute food insecurity due to the combination of a poor start to Season B, yield reductions resulting from excessive rainfall in April and May, and labor and income losses accruing from reduced livestock production. An estimated 25,000 refugees from Burundi are currently in need of humanitarian assistance.


     

     ZONE

     

        CURRENT ANOMALIES

       

     PROJECTED ANOMALIES

    Bugesera Cassava and Eastern Semi-Arid Agro Pastoral Zones

    • As of the end of May, roughly 25,000 refugees from Burundi have arrived in camps, although some refugees are hosted by local communities.
    • Refugee inflows from Burundi are expected to continue. UNHCR estimates the refugee population will reach 100,000 by September 2015

    Eastern Semi-Arid Agro Pastoral Zone

    • Livestock production and sales have declined since the outbreak of Foot and Mouth Disease (FMD) and the subsequent livestock quarantine
    • Below-average food and income from livestock production and sales.

    East Congo Nile Highland Subsistence Farming livelihood zone

     

    • Flash floods in Nyaribu, Ngororero and Nyamagabe districts, after successive below-average season.
    • Season B crop losses

    Projected outlook through September 2015

    Following a poor start of season for the February to May Season B, substantial rains from April through mid-May (Figure 1) improved vegetation conditions, currently above normal seasonal levels (Figure 2). Although April to May rainfall improved crop conditions overall, heavy rains caused damage to bean crops in some areas, particularly in Nyaribu, Ngororero and Nyamagabe districts in East Congo Nile Highland Subsistence Farming Livelihood Zone where heavy rainfall caused flash flooding in April.  Overall, Season B Production is expected to be near average, with some yield losses in flood-affected areas and harvesting of beans and maize is expected to begin over the course of the next few weeks.

    The rapid influx of 25,000 refugees from Burundi over the last few months has impacted access to food and income for poor households in the Bugesera Cassava Livelihood Zone, who are currently experiencing Stressed (IPC Phase 2) acute food insecurity.  Although most refugees are being re-located to the Mahama camp in Kirehe District in the Eastern Semi-Arid Agropastoral Zone, some are hosted by households in Bugeresa and Kirehe. Increased labor supply as a result of this population influx has reduced labor opportunities for poor households.

    Access to food and income from livestock production has declined in the Eastern Semi-Arid Agro Pastoral Zone due to the outbreak of Foot and Mouth Disease (FMD) and quarantine on the movement and trade of livestock in Nyagatare, Gatsibo, Kayonza and Kirehe districts. Sales of small livestock are an important source of income for the poor during the May to June pre-harvest period and the quarantine has compromised access to markets for the poor, reducing household capacity to meet essential food and non-food needs. 

    Imports of maize, beans and sorghum from Uganda and Tanzania have kept prices low, despite below-average production in recent seasons. In April, maize prices in Kigali were 11 percent lower than the three-year average and rice prices were more.  Staple food prices are expected to decline seasonally starting in mid-June as harvests increase food availability.

    Food security is expected to improve to Minimal (IPC Phase 1) starting in mid-June in Bugesera Cassava, Eastern Semi-Arid Agro Pastoral, and  East Congo Nile Highland Subsistence Farming Livelihood Zones due to improved household food supply and labor income, during harvest and post-harvest period.  Minimal (IPC Phase 1) acute food insecurity is expected country-wide through September. 

    Figures Figure 1. Rainfall estimate (RFE) in millimeters (mm), Eastern Sorghum Cropping Zone, compared to the 2001-2014 mean

    Figure 1

    Figure 1. Rainfall estimate (RFE) in millimeters (mm), Eastern Sorghum Cropping Zone, compared to the 2001-2014 mean

    Source: FEWS NET/USGS

    Figure 2. Normalized Difference Vegetation Index (NDVI) compared to the 2001-2010 mean

    Figure 2

    Figure 2. Normalized Difference Vegetation Index (NDVI) compared to the 2001-2010 mean

    Source: FEWS NET/USGS

    Seasonal calendar for a typical year

    Figure 3

    Seasonal calendar for a typical year

    Source: FEWS NET

    Figure 4

    Source:

    In remote monitoring, a coordinator typically works from a nearby regional office. Relying on partners for data, the coordinator uses scenario development to conduct analysis and produce monthly reports. As less data may be available, remote monitoring reports may have less detail than those from countries with FEWS NET offices. Learn more about our work here.

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