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Minor improvements in acute food insecurity expected with the coming 2016 harvest

  • Key Message Update
  • Lesotho
  • March 2016
Minor improvements in acute food insecurity expected with the coming 2016 harvest

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  • Key Messages
  • Key Messages
    • The peak of the lean season continues and the current agricultural season is almost over. Field observations and satellite imagery suggest very poor production prospects for the 2016 harvest and the possibility of being the lowest on record[i]. The anticipated low production will provide minimal improvements in food availability at the household level. Many households will likely continue relying heavily on food purchases at local markets in order to access food for during the harvest and post-harvest period.

    • The current Stressed (IPC Phase 2) food insecurity situation is likely to worsen to Crisis (IPC Phase 3) between June and September and   may even deteriorate further. An earlier than normal lean season is expected during the 2016/17 consumption year.

    • The El Niño-induced drought conditions have resulted in the absence of green foods for most households that would usually be consuming these during this period.  At the same time, harvest-related labor opportunities are reduced due to the anticipated very poor harvest. This will limit income and constrain food access for most very poor and poor households that normally rely on these livelihood strategies.  With staple prices remaining high, purchasing power for most very poor and poor households will continue to deteriorate as well. 

    • Though accumulated rainfall remained lower than normal during this season, rainfall received between mid-January and March has provided some relief by improving pasture conditions and the availability of water. In the short-term this increased moisture will improve livestock conditions and the availability of water for human consumption. 

      [i] The lowest total cereal production was 58,162 MT for the 2011/12 cropping season. 


    For more detailed analysis, see the Food Security Outlook/Remote Monitoring Update for February – September 2016.

    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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