Skip to main content

Post-flood and second season production support household food access

  • Key Message Update
  • Mozambique
  • September 2023
Post-flood and second season production support household food access

Download the Report

  • Key Messages
  • Key Messages
    • In early September, FEWS NET conducted rapid food security assessments in the semi-arid zones of Tete, Gaza, and Inhambane. Qualitative findings indicate that households recorded above-average second season harvests of vegetables and some cereal crops, driven mainly by post-flood production. The good second season is supporting household food access and availability. Most households across the country are accessing food from the second season, food reserves from the main 2023 harvest, and market food purchases. In areas where the second season is not typically or widely practiced, most poor households continue to earn enough income for market purchases of food from self-employment activities, including the sale of charcoal, firewood, construction stakes, and other forest products. Overall, most households are meeting their food needs, but the high cost of living limits access to non-food needs, driving Stressed (IPC Phase 2) outcomes in most areas of southern and central Mozambique. However, Crisis (IPC Phase 3) outcomes are ongoing in areas worst affected by shocks in 2023, where households have limited food stocks and income-earning opportunities. In Cabo Delgado, the ongoing distribution of humanitarian food assistance is supporting Stressed! (IPC Phase 2!) outcomes, with Crisis (IPC Phase 3) in more conflict-affected areas.
    • There has been relatively limited insurgent activity in Cabo Delgado, except for a major attack in Naquitengue village in Mocimboa da Praia, where civilians were killed. However, insurgents remain active along the coast of Macomia district. According to ACLED, the killings in Naquitengue, an isolated settlement in a relatively uninhabited territory, represent a significant departure from the insurgents’ recent practice of targeting the military and security forces. In August 2023, the IOM estimates around 541,000 IDPs have returned home, with most people returning to Mocimba da Praia, Palma, and Muidumbe. Indicative group interviews by IOM with key Informants reported that IDPs are returning home because the place of origin is now safe, to secure land to cultivate crops for the 2023/24 agricultural season, and reunite with family. Nevertheless, around 627,850 people remain displaced in Cabo Delgado, with most IDPs residing in Cidade de Pemba, Metuge, and Mueda. Around two-thirds of IDPs live in host communities, with the rest located across 94 displacement sites.
    • In the July/August distribution cycle, the Food Security Cluster (FSC) partners assisted around 684,240 people nationally with humanitarian food assistance (HFA), around 44 percent of the targeted beneficiaries. Around 491,480 people in Cabo Delagado received assistance. Additionally, nearly 102,335 people received support in recovering or strengthening their basic livelihoods in 11 districts of Cabo Delgado province. Four of the nine districts where the WFP-led Vulnerability Based Targeting (VBT) exercise was conducted are distributing assistance based on VBT lists. Households receive rations equivalent to around 39 percent of their monthly kilocalories needs, with around three-quarters of HFA distributed as in-kind food assistance and the remainder distributed as cash-based transfers (CBT). In areas affected by tropical cyclone Freddy, around 86,230 people received HFA in August, primarily in Zambezia province and also in Tete, Sofala, Gaza, and Inhambane provinces.
    • In August 2023, maize grain prices remained stable or increased by 9 to 16 percent in all markets with available data. In most markets, maize grain prices in August were 20 to 60 percent higher than last year and around 15 to 65 percent higher than the five-year average. Rice and maize meal prices remained relatively stable from July to August 2023, except for the 6 and 7 percent increases in Maputo and Mocuba markets. However, rice and maize meal prices in August were up to 12 percent higher than prices last year and up to 27 percent higher than the five-year average. In August, the annual inflation rate in Mozambique declined for the fifth consecutive month, reaching 4.93 percent, the lowest rate since January 2021. Prices slowed down mostly for food and non-alcoholic beverages, transportation, and housing and utilities. Mozambique’s National Institute of Statistics (INE) attributes the easing in price pressures to declines in the prices of tomatoes, lettuce, fresh fish, diesel, cooking oil, butter beans, and cabbage. However, high staple food prices are keeping the cost of living high for most poor and very poor households, especially in areas affected by climate shocks or conflict where many poor households have limited income-earning opportunities. 
    • From October to December 2023, strong El Niño conditions are expected to delay the start of the 2023/24 rainy season by around one dekad (10 days) with mixed performance, especially in southern and parts of central Mozambique. Irregular rainfall will most likely compound the impacts of reduced access to agricultural inputs on planted areas, affecting income-earning among poor households who rely on agricultural labor opportunities. Close monitoring of rainfall totals and distribution will be required to assess the severity of adverse impacts on cropping conditions for the 2024 harvest. There is particular concern for areas in southern and central Mozambique that experienced crop losses due to dry spells in 2023 and cyclones in 2022 and 2023. However, rainfall is expected to be cumulatively average to above average in northern Mozambique, supporting crop growth. Government and donors should prepare now for rising food assistance needs in 2024.

    Recommended citation: FEWS NET. Mozambique Key Message Update September 2023: Post-flood and second season production support household food access, 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.

    Get the latest food security updates in your inbox Sign up for emails

    The information provided on this Website is not official U.S. Government information and does not represent the views or positions of the U.S. Agency for International Development or the U.S. Government.

    Jump back to top