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Humanitarian food need, down from last year amid falling prices, remains above average

  • Key Message Update
  • Afghanistan
  • July 2023
Humanitarian food need, down from last year amid falling prices, remains above average

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  • Key Messages
  • Key Messages
    • The wheat harvest has concluded in most lower-elevation areas, and production is estimated to be below average due to generally poor levels of precipitation during the wet season. Wheat harvesting activities will continue through mid-October in higher-elevation areas. While final national-level wheat production is expected to be greater than last year’s harvest, this year’s wheat harvest will still be below average, with the largest deficits expected in northern and northeaster areas of the country.

    • Second season planting, mainly for maize and rice, started in lower elevation provinces in the northeast and east. Second-season harvests for these crops in October and November are expected to be better than last year but still below average. Despite below-average irrigation for other crops, the use of deeper wells for fruit (mainly melon) and vegetable farming has facilitated near-average production for these crops in most areas.

    • In recent months, staple food prices have declined due to a combination of factors, including a stable market supply resulting from the availability of the harvest, consistent import supply, as well as declines in global food and diesel prices. At the national level, wheat prices have fallen by 18 percent compared to the three-year average. In July, the Food Security and Agriculture Cluster food basket, which includes wheat flour, lentils, rice, cooking oil, and salt, maintained a price similar to the previous month across the country; the national average price declined 24 percent against the same time last year.

    • Widespread Stressed (IPC Phase 2) acute food insecurity outcomes are expected across most of Afghanistan through at least early 2024. Large areas of the north and northeast, which have been more affected by reductions in crop and livestock production, will face Crisis (IPC Phase 3) from late 2023 until at least early 2024. While the magnitude of acute food insecurity need through early 2024 is expected to be lower than the same time last year, needs will remain above average.

    Recommended citation: FEWS NET. Afghanistan Key Message Update, July 2023: Humanitarian food need, down from last year amid falling prices, remains above average, 2023.

    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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