Population in Crisis (IPC Phase 3) and higher likely to increase through December
IPC 2.0 Acute Food Insecurity Phase
IPC 2.0 Acute Food Insecurity Phase
current or programmed humanitarian assistance
IPC 2.0 Acute Food Insecurity Phase
current or programmed humanitarian assistance
In most pastoral areas, increasing pasture and water access during the April to June Gu rains led to increased livestock production and productivity. As a result, food security has improved in these areas. Most agropastoral areas have had similar improvements in food security. However, in Guban Pastoral livelihood zone, a coastal area in the Northwest, the Gu is not a major rainfall season, so dry season conditions still prevail there. Also, food security deteriorated in agropastoral areas in Awdal, Hiraan, Middle Juba, and Woqooyi Galbeed Regions, following average to below-average Gu rains that were not well distributed temporally. Crop production is likely to be below average in these areas due to below-average planted area and inadequate rainfall during the flowering and tasseling stages of crop development. In riverine areas of Jowhar District, floods destroyed planted crops and reduced labor opportunities associated with the growing season. In most cereal-producing areas, locally produced cereal prices remain high, and they have been following the seasonal trend of increasing before the start of the Gu harvest in July/August.
- Gu rains started in mid-April with typical distribution and intensity in most parts of the country. Cumulative April to June Gu rainfall was largely near average to above average in terms of amount, but the rains were unevenly, temporally distributed. They ended early in early May in some northern and most southern and central regions. However, rains were below-average in parts of both the North and South, and coastal rains were well below average in the southern and central regions.
- While the rains ended early in the Northwest and Northeast, moderate to light rains fell during most of the season in most of the Hawd, Addun Pastoral, Northern Inland Pastoral, East Golis Pastoral, and West Golis Pastoral livelihood zones, and in some agropastoral areas in Hargeysa and Gabiley Districts. However, most agropastoral areas in Awdal, Togdheer, and Woqooyi Galbeed, and some parts Northern Inland Pastoral livelihood zone in Bari and Sanaag Regions had below-average cumulative rainfall for the season. In these areas, households migrated their livestock to neighboring areas that had received more substantial rains.
- In the central regions, rains fell in April and early May in most parts of the Hawd, Addun Pastoral livelihood zone, and in the Cowpea Belt livelihood zone. However, there was not rain in late May and early June. While this season’s rains were near average in amount, they were not being as many rainy days as is typical. These rains regenerated pasture, replenished both natural water catchments and berkads, and supported typical cowpea development. In most parts of Coastal Deeh Pastoral livelihood zone in the central regions, Gu rains were generally lighter, so pasture conditions deteriorated and water sources were only partially replenished. In most pastoral areas, with the early cessation of the rains in early May followed by cold and dry Xagaa winds since then, the depletion of water sources has been faster than normal as has the deterioration of rangeland conditions.
- In the South, most of Lower Juba, Middle Shabelle, and Bay, and parts of Lower Shabelle, Middle Juba, and Hiraan received fairly well distributed, near average to above-average amounts of Gu rainfall despite the rains ending a month early. However, in coastal areas and adjacent agropastoral areas in the South, Gu rainfall was well below average.
- Pasture availability is typical in most parts of the country. However, there are some parts of the North and South where pasture is less available than is typical for this time of year. Rangeland resources became more available during the rains in most of Somalia. However, there are areas with fewer rangeland resources, as confirmed by areas below the 2001-to-2010 Normalized Difference Vegetation Index average in parts of Awdal, Woqooyi Galbeed, Bari, Sanaag, Coastal Deeh Pastoral livelihood zone in the South, and some small areas in Gedo, Lower Juba, and Middle Juba.
- In the Northeast, green pasture availability has declined in coastal areas, East Golis Pastoral, and Northern Inland Pastoral livelihood zones. However, dry pasture remains available in most of Nugal and northern Mudug. Livestock have been migrated mostly to Hawd and Addun Pastoral livelihood zones. Due to the migration, water trucking has not restarted yet as pasture and water remain available to support the livestock remaining in Northern Inland Pastoral livelihood zone. Despite the arrival of migrated livestock in Hawd and Addun Pastoral livelihood zones, pasture and water availability still remains typical in those areas. Water prices in Northern Inland Pastoral livelihood zone have increased. A jerry can (20 liters) of water is being sold for SOS 3,250 up to SOS 5,000 in a few areas. Poor pastoralists and their herds have less access to pasture than the better-off pastoralists who have moved their livestock to areas with more pasture and water in Mudug and Sool Regions.
- In the Northwest, rangeland conditions were typical in pastoral areas. However, in most pastoral and agropastoral areas of Awdal and Woqooyi Galbeed Regions, parts of Togdheer Agropastoral livelihood zone, and Northern Inland Pastoral livelihood zone in Sanaag Region, pasture and water availability are below average as a result of below-average Gu rainfall from March to June. In response, livestock were migrated to Sool Region and the Hawd in Togdheer where pasture and browse conditions had improved earlier than normal.
- In the central regions, rangeland conditions were seasonally typical in most pastoral areas due to the near average amounts of rainfall received from late March to early May. These rains also supported the development of cowpeas and refilled water points. However, In Coastal Deeh Pastoral livelihood zone, vegetation conditions were poor. As a result, livestock were migrated to Addun Pastoral livelihood zone and to the Cowpea Belt livelihood zone.
- In the South, pasture conditions were mostly seasonally typical due to near average to above average April and May rainfall. However, the early end of the Gu rains in May and the early start of dry Xagaa winds have resulted in faster than usual deterioration of crop, pasture, and water conditions. In the areas that received below average rainfall in Gedo, Lower Shabelle, and Lower and Middle Juba Regions, pasture and water conditions have deteriorated since June. However, Xagaa rains received in early July helped reverse the deterioration of pasture and water conditions in Lower Shabelle and Lower and Middle Juba. In Coastal Deeh Pastoral livelihood zone and adjacent agropastoral areas, pasture and water availability remained limited until June, as most water sources dried up during the Gu. However, the onset of Xagaa rains in early July has since increased the availability of water, and pasture began rejuvenating in coastal areas.
- Livestock body conditions, production, and values: As a result of the April to June Gu rains, both pasture and water availability have increased and contributed to improved livestock body conditions. However, poor livestock body conditions are found in some areas that had below-average rainfall, including parts of Northern Inland Pastoral, Guban Pastoral, Northwest Agropastoral, and Coastal Deeh Pastoral livelihood zones. Small ruminants and cattle had a moderate level of births from March to June, but there was a low rate of camels calving due to a low rate of conceptions during the Gu and the Deyr rains last year. Consequently, milk availability has increased to near average in most agropastoral and pastoral livelihood zones. In pastoral areas of the North and South-Central, an average rate of conceptions was reported across all livestock species, but lower rates were reported in Guban Pastoral livelihood zone and some areas that had below-average April to June Gu rainfall. Livestock export demand and prices are currently decreasing as demand for Ramadan in the Gulf States ended in May. Overall, herd sizes in June 2015 were mostly near baseline levels. However, livestock holdings in Southern Agropastoral livelihood zone in Hiraan and Sakow District of Middle Juba, Coastal Deeh Pastoral livelihood zone, and Guban Pastoral livelihood zone have increased since January but remain below baseline levels.
- Crop performance:
- In the North, in Northwest Agropastoral livelihood zone in Awdal and Woqooyi Galbeed Regions, most of the Gu maize has failed to reach maturity. Similarly, cash crops also did not develop as well as typical. However, in much of Togdheer Agropastoral livelihood zone, farmers planted fodder crops, and fodder demand to feed livestock being exported remains high. Short-cycle sorghum is currently being planted to be harvested after the end of the July to August Karan rains.
- In Southern Agropastoral livelihood zone in Hiraan, Gedo, and Middle Juba, long dry spells and the early cessation of the Gu rains led to some crops wilting, and they will likely only be suitable for fodder. A high number of quelea birds attacks also reduced yields. Especially in Hiraan, many of the crops did not develop well.
- In Lower Shabelle, planted area for maize was near average and higher than the Gu in 2014, in part due to moderate to heavy rains received between late March and early May. However, planted area for sorghum was below average, as households sought to minimize potential losses to quelea birds and increased planted area for sesame. There was almost no planting in the rainfed coastal areas of Lower Shabelle in Afgoye, Marka, and Barava Districts. In general, cereal crops are mostly performing normally, though an estimated quarter of the maize crop is growing more slowly due to moisture stress. In Wanlaweyne District, sorghum planted area was above average, but much of the sorghum was washed away by flash floods in April. These areas were largely replanted with maize, reducing sorghum planted area in this district and reducing the expected sorghum production. In addition, some of the standing sorghum crop has been consumed by quelea birds. Cash crops such as sesame and cowpeas are developing normally.
- In Bay Region, planted area was unusually above-average for maize and for cash crops leading to less planted area for sorghum. In some parts of Baidoa, Dinsor, and Qansaxdhere Districts, late-planted crops are only at the vegetative stage and showing signs of moisture stress. However, recent Xagaa rains in July helped revive growth. With such low sorghum planted area, sorghum production will likely be below-average in July/August but likely above last year’s low Gu production. However, in Bakool Region, crops have not performed well in Rabdhurre District and western Xudur, but in the rest of the region, they are developed normally.
- In Middle Shabelle, there were not coastal Xagaa rains in June. March to June Gu rains were erratically distributed across space and time in this area. Rainfed sorghum has not developed well, as a result. Average area was planted under Gu crops in agropastoral areas, and these areas typically contribute close to 40 percent of the region’s Gu cereals. However, the majority of the arable riverine land in Jowhar remains flooded and uncultivated. With very little cultivation occurring in riverine areas near Jowhar, labor demand for planting, weeding, and harvesting has been especially low, reducing incomes across the area. Flood-recession cultivation started in late June.
- In the Cowpea Belt livelihood zone in the central regions, average area was planted under cowpeas and sorghum. The cowpea harvest is already underway, and it will likely be near average due to average amount of Gu rainfall and fairly evenly spatial distribution in this area during the cowpea crop’s establishment stage in April and May.
- Staple food prices:
- Sorghum and maize prices in June were largely stable compared to May. In the sorghum belt including Baidoa, retail locally produced red sorghum increased between six and 16 percent from January as the Deyr harvest was starting to June at the typical peak of the lean season. However, June prices were between 11 and 26 percent lower than last year and their five-year averages. The Shabelle Valley average maize price increased 22 percent from May to June, but in June, it was slightly lower than last year and the five-year average. The Juba Valley average maize prices are 11 and 21 percent lower than last year and their five-year averages, respectively. These lower maize prices are likely due to the Deyr off-season harvest entering markets as market feeder roads dried earlier than normal due to the early end of the Gu rains.
- Imported commodity prices for the most consumed items such as rice, wheat flour, and sugar have remained largely stable since the beginning of 2015. However, in Bakool and Hiraan Regions, trade has been severely curtailed by the conflict, and imported commodity prices have risen. For example, the regional average price of imported rice increased by 33 percent from January to June. Road blocks, trade restrictions, and taxation imposed on imported commodities entering Bakool and Hiraan by Al Shabaab and the national army have all contributed to higher prices in these areas.
- Livestock prices:
- In most markets in the central and northern regions, livestock prices are typical, and they are following the seasonal trend of decreasing following the end of Ramadan exports in May. However, prices are still generally higher than last year in Awdal and Woqooyi Galbeed.
- In the South, cattle prices are slightly lower than last year. For example in June, a local quality cattle sale in Afmadow in Lower Juba Region would sell for 10 percent less than last year.
- Also in the South, local quality goat prices fell slightly more than usual. In Baidoa in Bay Region, a local quality goat in June was 21 percent less than last year. In Qoryoley in Lower Shabelle Region, while prices were not particularly low in June, the price never reached last year’s level during Ramadan when demand is higher. June goat prices were 18 percent less than last year in Sakow in Middle Juba. Some of the lower prices may be due to an increased number of goats on the market, attributed, in part, to households needing to sell goats to buy food as a result of limited cereal stocks from recent seasons.
- Terms of Trade (ToT): Generally, the localquality goat to cereals ToT is mostly near average though they seasonally decreased in most areas in the country from May to June. Despite mostly typical ToT trends, in some regions such as Awdal, Bakool, Lower Juba, Middle Shabelle, and Woqooyi Galbeed, the ToT were either stable or increasing slightly. In Dinsor in Bay Region, a local quality goat could buy 204 kilograms (kg) of white sorghum in June compared to 242 kg in June 2014. Similarly in Qoryoley in Lower Shabelle, a local-quality goat could fetch 127 kg of white maize in June 2015 compared to 199 kg in June 2014. Daily labor wages to local cereals ToT for both rural and urban day laborers in most areas remained stable or increased between 11 and 38 percent since January 2015. The highest increases were in Mudug Region. In Bakool, Bay, Gedo, Hiraan, and Lower Shabelle Regions, daily wage to cereals TOT declined 17 to 30 percent below last year.
Food security outcomes in July deteriorated in some parts of the country, including:
- Overall, in pastoral areas, poor households are currently Stressed (IPC Phase 2) as households have some saleable animals, but they are still repaying debts.
- Southern Agropastoral livelihood zone in Sakow in Middle Juba and Rabdhurre in Bakool: Poor households have no cereal stocks or green consumption as last three seasons had far below-average production with some households not harvesting at all. As a result, households need to purchase all of their food, but cereal prices in these areas are as high as they have been since September 2012. The average local-quality goat to white sorghum TOT have dropped 20, 25, and 64 percent compared to January 2015, last year, and the five-year average, respectively. Milk availability is low as livestock are far from homesteads, and debt levels have increased to purchase food. Poor households are currently in Crisis (IPC Phase 3).
- In Southern Agropastoral livelihood zone in Hiraan, three consecutive seasons of significantly below-average crop production have had a cumulative impact. Even this year, agricultural labor demand was considerably below average even during May and June when demand to work on Gu crops is typically high. Most planted crops did not reach maturity due to early cessation of the Gu rains. Conflict has led to high prices in markets, and humanitarian access is very limited. However, livestock have survived as they were migrated to neighboring Southern Inland Pastoral livelihood zone where pasture, browse, and water have been more available. Average reproduction and production levels of livestock were reported. Poor households are currently in Crisis (IPC Phase 3).
- Generally in Northwest Agropastoral livelihood zone in Awdal and Woqooyi Galbeed, households do not have food stocks or access to any green crops to consume. Gu yellow maize did not develop, and most long-cycle white sorghum seeds planted did not germinate. Other crops either wilted at the vegetative level or have had very slow growth due to moisture stress. Similarly, cash crops have not performed well, reducing incomes. Debt levels have increased as households purchase food on credit. Households are receiving some support from relatives, as kinship support is very prevalent in this area, helping mitigate further deterioration of food security. Poor households in Awdal region are currently in Crisis (IPC Phase 3). However, poor households in Woqooyi Galbeed are currently Stressed (IPC Phase 2) with some households already in Crisis (IPC Phase 3).
- In Middle Shabelle, maize price have been increasing since January 2015. The below-average Deyr harvest in February/March was followed by a resumption of flooding in April. With few agricultural labor opportunities in recent months, poor households have less income and food access. Even flood-recession cultivation has been delayed as some arable land in riverine areas remained flooded at the beginning of June. However, households have increased their consumption of fish and other wild foods. As livestock were migrated away from homesteads to wet-season grazing areas, milk supply in markets is low and milk prices are high. In riverine areas, even poor households purchase milk much of the year. Poor households in riverine Jowhar and flooded villages in Balad District are currently in Crisis (IPC Phase 3).
- In urban areas where conflict has been most active, including Buloburte in Hiraan, and Wajid, Xudur, and Rabdhurre in Bakool, food security has improved as both the World Food Program (WFP) and United Nations Children’s Fund (UNICEF) have been providing humanitarian assistance. However, trade restrictions are still effective at limiting much trade to the towns, and that has led to overall reduced levels of economic activities and of labor opportunities. Poor households are mainly in Crisis (IPC Phase 3).
The July to December 2015 most likely scenario is based on the following national-level assumptions:
- The July to September Karan rains over northwest Somalia are likely to have a near-normal start and have average to below average amounts of rain. These rains will maintain average water and pasture conditions and support normal crop growth.
- June to August Xagaa rains started mostly on time and are likely to have average to below-average cumulative rainfall in Lower and Middle Juba, Lower and Middle Shabelle, and Bay. These rains will likely support the standing crops and recently planted flood-recession crops in flood-affected areas in Middle and Lower Shabelle Regions. These rains will likely increase Gu off-season crop production and increase water availability. They will allow for additional regeneration of pasture.
- As El Niño is likely to continue in late 2015, the October to December Deyr rains are likely to be average to above average in cumulative amount. There will be an increased risk for both river flooding and flash flooding in flood-prone areas.
- Warmer than average land surface temperatures are forecast during the dry season through September.
Crop production and agricultural labor:
- The Gu cereal harvest will likely to be below average, including in Bay, Lower Shabelle, Middle Shabelle, Bakool, Gedo, and Lower and Middle Juba Regions. The harvest will likely occur at the normal time in July and August.
- An above-average Gu off-season harvest is expected in September. As some off-season planting is in areas at risk of river flooding once the likely above-average Deyr rains start, it is likely that some land may flood again before this harvest is finished.
- Agricultural labor demand is likely to be average to above average from October to December in agropastoral areas due to the forecast average to above-average October to December Deyr rains.
- Severe flooding is likely in many flood-prone riverine areas in the Shabelle and Juba Regions, thus land preparation, planting, and other labor-intensive activities are likely to be delayed. Agricultural labor demand in these areas thus may not increase until later in the year than normal. Above-average recession cultivation and off-season Deyr planting will likely start in late December and continue through March 2016.
- Farmers in agropastoral areas of South-Central will likely increase total planted area under cereals between October and December to compensate for low supply from riverine areas due to flooding, low household cereal stocks from the likely below average Gu harvest in July/August, and as a response to higher prices for local cereals.
- With the early ending of the Gu rains followed by strong Xagaa winds, rangeland and water conditions are likely to continue to deteriorate faster than normal through September. Water trucking is likely to start earlier than usual and occur more often than usual in several pastoral areas, including Northern Inland Pastoral and Hawd Pastoral livelihood zones.
- Livestock body conditions in the parts of Awdal and Bari Regions where there was very little rain will likely weaken during July to September Xagaa dry season as grazing conditions will likely be poorer than usual. Being weaker and less healthy, when the projected average to above-average Deyr rains start in late September/early October, livestock mortality from hypothermia is likely at a higher rate than at the start of a more typical rainy season.
- Camel and cattle milk availability will likely follow the seasonal trend, decreasing between July and September due to reduced pasture and water availability in some pastoral areas in the northern and central regions.
- Cattle and camel milk availability will likely increase in the South due to the increased number of milking animals and the likely average availability of pasture and water in grazing areas during the July to September Xagaa season.
- A medium to high rate of livestock conceptions is likely in November/December as a result of the projected above average Deyr rains.
- Livestock prices are likely to rise between August and October due to increased export demand in preparation for the Hajj. However, prices are likely to seasonally decline from November through December.
Markets and trade:
- With likely below-average Gu cereal production, market supply is likely to be less than usual. Prices of locally produced grain though will likely decline slightly during the harvest in July and August, but they will sharply increase, especially in the deficit markets between September and December.
- In the Northwest, local cereal prices will remain high until the Karan harvest in November enters markets.
- In the markets affected by the trade restrictions and conflict, primarily in Bakool and Hiraan, both locally-produced and imported commodities will be less available than usual. Prices are likely to remain high while trade restrictions remain in place and while humanitarian assistance continues to be airlifted into the towns.
- Rice prices are expected to remain stable due to ample global stocks and mostly stable prices in most surplus-producing countries.
- As the monsoon winds blow over the Indian Ocean between now and September, the volume of food and diesel imports will decline due to smaller ships being unable to sail. Thus, there will be a seasonal reduction in the volume of imports of rice, wheat flour, vegetable oil, sugar, and diesel during these months. However, between October and December, imports are expected to increase, reducing prices of imported goods or stabilizing their prices.
- Humanitarian access will likely shrink seasonally from October to December due to flooding and heavy rains likely preventing transportation on the feeder roads, which link rural settlements to towns. Increased humanitarian access in the South is not expected between now and December.
- The conflict between the government supported by the African Union Mission in Somalia (AMISOM) and Al Shabaab in South-Central is likely to continue to constrain trade and population movements and humanitarian access. The conflict is likely to result in increased displacement and loss of life and assets even compared to recent months.
Most Likely Food Security Outcomes
Despite the likely improvement of food security outcomes in most rural areas of the country, the population in Crisis and Emergency (IPC Phases 3 and 4) is expected increase from what was projected in February 2015. The number of areas in Crisis (IPC Phase 3) will likely increase as will the number of households in Crisis (IPC Phase 3) between now and the end of December. Southern Agropastoral livelihood zone in Hiraan and Middle Juba, Rabdhurre District in Bakool, Northwest Agropastoral in Awdal and Woqooyi Galbeed, and Riverine Gravity Irrigated Irrigation livelihood zone in Jowhar District in Middle Shabelle will be among the areas like to see further food security deterioration.
Between October to December, with a likely average to above-average amount of Deyr rainfall, agricultural labor income will likely enable many poor households to acquire food, especially in the agropastoral areas where labor demand is expected to be high. However, in riverine areas, the projected heavy rains are likely to cause both flash and river floods, likely delaying cropping, spreading water-borne diseases, and increasing malnutrition prevalence. Riverine areas will enter the October to November minor lean season with very limited cereal stocks. As a result of delays to seasonal activities in riverine areas, significant improvements in food security from Crisis (IPC Phase 3) to Stressed (IPC Phase 2) are unlikely before December. Many riverine areas will likely not see improvements until after the Deyr off-season crops become available in March/April 2016.
The towns in Hiraan and Bakool Regions, where supplies into towns have been limited by conflict and trade restrictions, will remain in Crisis (IPC Phase 3!) but only due to the humanitarian assistance being airlifted into the towns. However, the low purchasing power of laborers due to lack of demand for labor, combined with high food prices due to low supply means some towns may fall into Emergency (IPC Phase 4) between now and December.
Most pastoral areas will likely remain Stressed (IPC Phase 2). Southern Inland Pastoral livelihood zone in Lower and Middle Juba will likely remain in Minimal (IPC Phase 1), having maintained good access to pasture and water. Pastoralists in these areas will likely access milk and income from their livestock. However, pastoralists in Guban Pastoral livelihood zone of the Northwest and some parts of the Northern Inland Pastoral livelihood zone of Bari Region will have reduced food access. These poor households will likely exhaust export- quality livestock during the Hajj exports through September, and they may start to sell productive animals to meet the costs of migration and water. Increased livestock sales will further reduce their livestock herd sizes, though these are near the herd levels found in household economy approach (HEA) baseline surveys . Income from livestock sales and livestock product sales will likely decline further from now to December as livestock body conditions deteriorate.
In agropastoral areas in Awdal and Woqooyi Galbeed, with almost no Gu maize, poor households are likely to remain in Crisis (IPC Phase 3) in Awdal Region until the Karan harvest starts in November and they move into Stressed (IPC Phase 2). In Woqooyi Galbeed, with slightly more production thus far and good access to humanitarian assistance, households will likely remain Stressed (IPC Phase 2!) but only with the presence of humanitarian assistance through December.
About Scenario Development
To project food security outcomes, FEWS NET develops a set of assumptions about likely events, their effects, and the probable responses of various actors. FEWS NET analyzes these assumptions in the context of current conditions and local livelihoods to arrive at a most likely scenario for the coming eight months. Learn more here.
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