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The situation is beginning to improve as the first products from the new harvest become available

  • Food Security Outlook Update
  • Chad
  • September 2013
The situation is beginning to improve as the first products from the new harvest become available

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  • Key Messages
  • Current Situation
  • Projected Outlook Through December 2013
  • Key Messages
    • The food situation is generally satisfactory in all regions of the Sahel, due to cereal availability at the household level and various assistance programs. Market supply levels are normal and prices are low compared to the same period last year. Currently, households are experiencing Minimal (IPC Phase 1) food insecurity.

    • Newly-harvested crops are gradually improving the food security situation for poor households in Logone Occidental, Logone Oriental, Tandjilé, and Mayo Kebbi Ouest. However, stocks are low due to the 2012 floods, causing prices to remain above average and reducing poor households’ access to cereals. Consequently, poor households in these areas have reduced their food consumption to minimally adequate levels and are currently Stressed (IPC Phase 2).

    • Given that an average harvest is expected in October, the outlook is favorable with households having fewer difficulties meeting their food consumption needs beginning in October. Income from selling agricultural products will also strengthen household purchasing power. Between October and December, the entire country will face Minimal (IPC Phase 1) food insecurity.


    Current Situation
    • Agricultural conditions: Rainfall levels recorded between July and September in most areas of the country were sufficient to allow good cereal crop development. The dominant stage of growth for millet and sorghum at this time is the flowering stage. This compares to a normal year, when crops would have been at either the heading or milk grain stage at this time. Harvesting of short-cycle crops (groundnuts, maize, and cassava) has begun in many locales, with a two- to three-week delay in some places (Koumra, Guelendeng, Biltine, etc.). As of August 31, an estimated 3,780,655 hectares were planted in cereals, which is 23 percent above the five-year average. Transplanting of berbéré dry-season sorghum has also begun in Guerra and Batha, similar to a normal year.
    • Agricultural labor is available but at a slightly higher cost due to atypically high demand this year, especially for weeding activities. For example, in Manda-1 in Moyen Chari, the daily cost of labor ranges from 1,000 to 1,500 FCFA, which compares to 750 to 1,000 FCFA during a normal year.
    • Pastoral conditions have improved greatly following ample and generally well-distributed and well-timed rains beginning in July. Herbaceous cover and the tree layer have regenerated and watering holes have filled, though to slightly lower levels than in a normal year. This has helped to ease some of the difficulties that were seen in the Sahelian zone between May and June. Animal health conditions are good throughout the country and the prevalence of soil-borne diseases, which are present in certain locales, is similar to a typical year.
    • Cereal markets and prices: In the Sudanian zone, household demand for cereals is lower than in August but is still higher than in a normal year. Aside from rice, local cereals are scarce compared to normal seasonal trends on Sudanian markets, and trader stocks are at below-average levels. In the Sahelian zone, markets continue to be supplied by neighboring villages and local merchants, as in a normal year. In the Sudanian zone, cereal prices have risen significantly above the five-year average. For example in Kélo, sorghum and millet prices are 37 and 33 percent, respectively, above the five-year average.
    • Current conditions are improving for households in Logone Oriental, Logone Occidental, Tandjilé, and Mayo Kebbi. This is due to the availability of newly-harvested foods (maize, groundnuts, tubers), even though quantities are below-average due to the delayed growing season. For this reason, households in this region have reduced their consumption to minimally adequate levels and are Stressed (IPC Phase 2). However, in the Sahelian zone, the situation has remained stable due to household carry-over stocks from last season that are at above-average levels. This stability can also be explained by targeted food assistance and subsidized cereal sales by ONASA (the national food security agency). Consequently, households in this zone are currently experiencing Minimal (IPC Phase 1) food insecurity. 

    Projected Outlook Through December 2013

    With an average harvest expected, cereal markets will be well-supplied beginning in October, similar to a normal year. This will cause cereal prices to seasonally fall and further improve very poor households’ access to food. Income sources will expand with the sale of harvested and market gardening crops, as well as income from agricultural labor. At the household level, the quantity of food, as well as the diversity of food products, will be sufficient and households will be able to meet their basic food and non-food needs. Accordingly, the entire country will face Minimal (IPC Phase 1) food insecurity through December 2013 (Figure 2). 

    Figures Seasonal calendar for a typical year

    Figure 1

    Seasonal calendar for a typical year

    Source: FEWS NET

    Figure 2

    Source:

    This Food Security Outlook Update provides an 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 over the next six months. Learn more here.

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