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Poor economic conditions and high staple prices drive atypically high needs during the lean season

  • Key Message Update
  • Nigeria
  • July 2022
Poor economic conditions and high staple prices drive atypically high needs during the lean season

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  • Key Messages
  • Key Messages
    • In the northeast, due to the prolonged nature of the conflict, low household assets and available labor opportunities, and atypically high staple food prices, purchasing power is poor for many households. Additionally, continued people movement to towns from inaccessible areas has further increased competition for available labor opportunities. According to IOM, as of mid-July, over 5,300 individuals from inaccessible areas are now in Bama, Dikwa, Gwoza, and Ngala LGAs. Furthermore, some people are voluntarily relocating from IDP camps to engage in the primary agricultural season. Consequently, many areas are in Crisis (IPC Phase 3). In areas inaccessible to humanitarian actors, bartering, begging, and wild food consumption are the main sources of food, with households facing significant food consumption gaps. As a result, Emergency (IPC Phase 4) outcomes are ongoing with associated high levels of acute malnutrition. 

    • The Borno State government, as of January, has relocated about 140,000 individuals from Maiduguri to Bama, Gwoza, Ngala, and Dikwa LGAs through the closure of IDP camps. According to OCHA, there are plans to close another three IDP camps in June, which would result in another 100,000 individuals likely moving to their area of origin. In May, food assistance delivery was slightly higher than in April, although lower than in May 2021, with assistance predominately concentrated in towns and IDP camps. The decline in the humanitarian response is due to funding constraints and high transaction costs from high fuel prices. Although, ongoing assistance is still mitigating consumption deficits among those in most IDP camps with Stressed! (IPC Phase 2!) outcomes on going in these areas. 

    • In July, kidnapping and bandit attacks continue across much of the Northwest, disrupting the ongoing primary agricultural season. Due to the insecurity, market activity remains disrupted, driving declines in access to agricultural input and increases in their prices. On top of lower-than-normal access to agricultural inputs, farmers have limited access to farmlands, leading to below-average engagement in the 2022 season. Additionally, food prices are high due to disrupted market activities, driving below-average purchasing power. Some households with access to dry season food stocks and are engaging in petty trade can meet basic food needs and face Stressed (IPC Phase 2).  Those households with limited income-earning opportunities and low food stocks are experiencing food consumption gaps and are in Crisis (IPC Phase 3), while households worst affected by the conflict in these areas are in Emergency (IPC Phase 4).

    • Poor macroeconomic conditions persist, with annual inflation accelerating to 18.6 percent in June, the highest since January 2017. The increasing annual inflation rate is attributable to rises in food prices, transportation costs, and fuel prices. Food prices remain significantly higher than average, and last year, exacerbated by the sustained high cost of transportation, high market demand, and reduced supplies during the lean season. 

    • Main season farming activities are underway across the country, with households engaged in planting, weeding, fertilizer applications, and the early green harvest of maize and yams, depending on the area. The rainy season is established across the country, with favorable crop conditions, except in localized areas affected by flooding in areas of Adamawa, Yobe, Lagos, and Abuja states and below-average rainfall in southeastern Nigeria. 

    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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