Food Security Outlook Update

Stressed outcomes, expected through December in parts of the southern and central regions

August 2015
2015-Q3-1-1-MZ-en

IPC 2.0 Acute Food Insecurity Phase

1: Minimal
2: Stressed
3: Crisis
4: Emergency
5: Famine
Would likely be at least one phase worse without current or programmed humanitarian assistance
FEWS NET classification is IPC-compatible. IPC-compatible analysis follows key IPC protocols but does not necessarily reflect the consensus of national food security partners.

IPC 2.0 Acute Food Insecurity Phase

1: Minimal
2: Stressed
3+: Crisis or higher
Would likely be at least one phase worse without
current or programmed humanitarian assistance
FEWS NET classification is IPC-compatible. IPC-compatible analysis follows key IPC protocols but does not necessarily reflect the consensus of national food security partners.
FEWS NET Remote Monitoring countries use a colored outline to represent the highest IPC classification in areas of concern.

IPC 2.0 Acute Food Insecurity Phase

Presence countries:
1: Minimal
2: Stressed
3: Crisis
4: Emergency
5: Famine
Remote monitoring
countries:
1: Minimal
2: Stressed
3+: Crisis or higher
Would likely be at least one phase worse without
current or programmed humanitarian assistance
FEWS NET Remote Monitoring countries use a colored outline to represent the highest IPC classification in areas of concern.

Key Messages

  • Minimal (IPC Phase 1) acute food insecurity outcomes are found across the country. However, Stressed (IPC Phase 2) outcomes will continue until December, in parts of the southern semiarid livelihood zone including several districts in Gaza and Inhambane provinces, and south of Sofala province.

  • Social safety-net programming is currently ongoing and food and water is being provided by government and partners as part of the humanitarian response and it is expected to continue until December. Between October and December, the upcoming rainfall season will likely improve the water shortages in the areas of focus of the south and central regions.

  • Although markets are adequately stocked, maize grain prices are increasing at levels that are more rapid than average and in some cases a month earlier than normally expected. These high food prices will likely limit poorer household purchasing power in the coming months.

Current Situation

  • For the majority of rural households throughout the country the general food security conditions continue to be favorable and Minimal food insecurity outcomes (IPC Phase 1) are projected until December. Many of these households are still consuming food stocks from the 2014/15 main harvest and are able to meet their basic food needs. In areas that typically practice second season cropping, households also have access to these crops, however the amount is slightly reduced this year in comparison to average due to the lower amounts of residual moisture as a result of dryness and drought in May and June.
  • Very poor households are Stressed (IPC Phase 2) in parts of southern semiarid areas, including the districts of Massangena and Chigubo, northern parts of Chicualacuala, Mabalane, Guijá, and Chibuto districts in Gaza province, along with Mabote, Funhalouro, Panda, Govuro, and Homoine districts in Inhambane province, and Machanga district in southern Sofala province. Households in these areas are experiencing acute food insecurity due to mid-season dryness which led to reduced crop yields and crop failure this past season, and significant water shortages for humans and for livestock use. These affected households are currently facing some livelihood protection deficits, whereby they are only able to meet their food needs, but are not able to meet their non-food requirements, compromising their livelihoods.
  • Between June and July, maize grain prices began increasing one month earlier than expected. For example, in Chókwe prices rose by 34 percent. Typically, maize grain prices start to increase between July and August. In Mocuba and Nampula, prices are high and increasing more rapidly than average. The abnormal increases and the above average rate at which prices are increasing is the result of below-average maize grain production for the 2014/15 agriculture season. 

Updated Assumptions

The assumptions used to develop the most likely scenario for the July-December Outlook period remain valid. A full discussion of the scenario is available at Mozambique Food Security Outlook for July to December 2015.

Projected Outlook through December 2015

For the majority of the country, Minimal food insecurity outcomes (IPC Phase 1) are projected until December. In the areas of focus:

August to September: The lean season is expected to begin in September as opposed to October for poor and very poor households in the drought-affected districts in the south and central zones of the country. In these areas, most household will cope by extending their typical livelihood strategies to meet their food needs, though they may not be able to afford some of the non-food expenditures. Social safety-net programming is currently ongoing and food and water is being provided by government and partners as part of the humanitarian response.  For income these households will increase their participation in non-farm income activities such as brewing, selling natural products such as grass, building and selling poles, producing and selling charcoal and firewood, hunting, and seeking casual labor for land preparation during the months of August and September. Stressed (IPC Phase 2) food insecurity outcomes will prevail.  

October to December: Own produced food stocks within poorer households will be finished. Agricultural labor opportunities (planting) are expected to increase as the onset of the next agricultural season approaches in October.  The income generated through the expansion of livelihood strategies, will continue to be enough for food purchases. However, households will continue face livelihood protection deficits because they may not be able to afford non-food expenditures. Social safety-net programming, along with food and water provisions from government and partners as part of the humanitarian response are expected to continue during this period.  The interventions will allow households preserve their livelihood assets in the areas of focus of the south and central regions. This is especially important since there is an increased chance for a delayed start of season given the forecast for the El Niño, possibly impacting agricultural labor opportunities including cultivation and weeding. It is expected that the onset of rains in November, even if poor, will provide a variety of wild and seasonal food that will gradually improve food access until the green harvest becomes available in January/February 2015. It is projected Stressed (IPC Phase 2) food insecurity outcomes. 

About this Update

This monthly report covers current conditions as well as changes to the projected outlook for food insecurity in this country. It updates FEWS NET’s quarterly Food Security Outlook. Learn more about our work here.

About FEWS NET

The Famine Early Warning Systems Network is a leading provider of early warning and analysis on food insecurity. Created by USAID in 1985 to help decision-makers plan for humanitarian crises, FEWS NET provides evidence-based analysis on approximately 30 countries. Implementing team members include NASA, NOAA, USDA, USGS, and CHC-UCSB, along with Chemonics International Inc. and Kimetrica.
Learn more About Us.

Link to United States Agency for International Development (USAID)Link to the United States Geological Survey's (USGS) FEWS NET Data PortalLink to U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA)
Link to National Aeronautics and Space Administration's (NASA) Earth ObservatoryLink to the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration's (NOAA) National Weather Service, Climage Prediction CenterLink to the Climate Hazards Center - UC Santa BarbaraLink to KimetricaLink to Chemonics