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Rodent infestation threatens second season crop production

  • Key Message Update
  • Mozambique
  • July 2017
Rodent infestation threatens second season crop production

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  • Key Messages
  • Key Messages
    • Due to continued food availability and falling staple food prices, Minimal (IPC Phase 1) acute food insecurity outcomes persist across the country, except in parts of the central semiarid areas of Chemba, Caia, and Maríngue districts in Sofala Province, which are currently Stressed (IPC Phase 2), and expected to worsen to Crisis (IPC Phase 3) from October through January 2018 during the lean season. In these areas, the recovery process from the drought and the recently ended conflict has been slow. The most vulnerable poor households are already likely facing Crisis (IPC Phase 3) outcomes.

    • As typical, second season production, which is ongoing in southern and central areas, is contributing to food availability. However, during an early July field assessment to the central region, FEWS NET observed that an unprecedented level of mice are consuming and damaging second season crops. In some central semiarid areas there was less moisture due to erratic 2016/17 rainfall, which already affected production levels, so this infestation is likely to lead to some poor households employing coping strategies earlier than normal in September. Other sources indicate that there are similar problems in other second season-producing areas. FEWS NET will continue to monitor and collect information about this rodent infestation. 

    • Staple food prices have continued to fall, facilitating better food access. From May to June 2017, maize grain prices decreased by 13 percent on average, with the largest price drop in northern Pemba. Current maize grain prices are on average 46 percent below last year’s and slightly below the five-year average. Rice and maize meal prices have been relatively stable but remain above the five-year average by 60 and 67 percent, respectively. In some markets, particularly in surplus-producing northern areas, maize grain prices have reached historical lows.

    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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