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The worsening sociopolitical and security conditions, impacting prices and availability of basic food products, further deteriorated food security conditions in Haiti

  • Key Message Update
  • Haiti
  • March 2024
The worsening sociopolitical and security conditions, impacting prices and availability of basic food products, further deteriorated food security conditions in Haiti

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  • Key Messages
  • Key Messages
    • Since the beginning of March, the security situation in the capital has worsened with the intensification of armed gang violence, the looting of warehouses and public and private establishments, and the forced closure of ports and airports. These events caused a halt to imports, including the flow of food products, reducing market supplies and thus impacting staple food prices. In addition, the deteriorating security situation has also affected livelihoods and fuel prices. As a result, FEWS NET expects the number of households in Crisis (IPC Phase 3) and Emergency (IPC Phase 4) in March to increase beyond the previous forecast. The extent of this increase is currently being assessed, with a revised analysis of both current and projected periods will be included in the April report. Furthermore, if the socio-political actors fail to find a favorable outcome to the crisis, notably political, by appointing representatives to the executive power and security by reducing the nuisance state of armed gangs, food insecurity could further deteriorate, and the number of the population in need would increase further in April. 
    • Since March 5, 2024, the country's largest seaport has received no ships, according to the Caribbean Port Service (CPS), as reported by "Le Nouvelliste." As a net importer of food products, Haiti is particularly vulnerable to dysfunctional ports and airports, fueling shortages of different products and impacting particularly the supply of food products. FEWS NET is closely monitoring developments in the security situation and their impact on the flow of supplies to markets, prices, and population displacements, among others, all of which are determining factors in Haiti's acute food security situation.
    • The upward trend in food prices observed in February continued in March despite the fall in annual inflation. Rice, whose prices rose by almost 6% between January and February, is the most widely consumed staple food in Haiti. Price collection has not yet been completed for March, but some traders have already raised the price of a 25 kg bag of imported rice to an above-average level due to forecasts of difficulties in replenishing the local market, according to our key informants. Compared with the five-year average, prices of all products monitored for February are atypically high, exceeding 75 percent for vegetable oil and even 100 percent for products such as imported or local rice, maize grain, and beans.
    • Finally, below-average rainfall, with irregular spatial and temporal distribution, has been recorded over the past three months. This irregularity in the spatiotemporal distribution of the rains, combined with the inadequacy or absence of assistance to already decapitalized farmers, as well as the high cost of agricultural inputs, has led to delays and a reduction compared with normal in soil preparation and sowing activities for this year's spring cropping season.

    Recommended citation: FEWS NET. Haiti Key Message Update March 2024: The worsening sociopolitical and security conditions, impacting prices and availability of basic food products, further deteriorated food security conditions in Haiti, 2024.

    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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