food security (9)

The March edition of the JRC's Anomaly Hotspots of Agricultural Production (ASAP) assessment is now available at: Anomaly Hotspots of Agricultural Production (ASAP) assessment

Main findings of the March global overview:

  • In Southern Africa, a rainfall deficit that started in February in central and eastern parts of the region, continued to affect the eastern part of the region at the beginning of March. Rainfall improved in mid-March, however tropical storms Ana and Gombe and October-December drought impacts are lowering national cereal productions. On the contrary, an above-average output is forecast in South Africa, in Eswatini and Lesotho.
  • In East Africa, there is increasing concern that the region will experience the fourth consecutive poor rainfall season during March-May 2022 rains. Cumulated Copernicus C3S multi-model rainfall forecasts for April-June show a high probability of a drier than average period for the Horn and wetter than average conditions for South Sudan, Western Kenya, Ethiopian Highlands and Uganda. The pressure on food security caused by the exceptionally prolonged drought appears even more threatening with the increase in food prices and the challenges of small-scale farmers to access fertiliser. A high number of people in the region (45-55 million) need humanitarian food and nutrition assistance to prevent Crisis or worse outcomes between January and May 2022 (FEWSNET).
  • In North Africa, the winter cereal season is suffering from drought stress and rainfall in March came in most cases too late for crop recovery. In Morocco and in western Algeria reduced yields can be expected (see more on yield forecasts in the latest MARS bulletin). A low winter wheat production in one or more countries in North Africa is of particular concern with the expected food price inflation linked to Russia’s invasion of Ukraine. Similarly, in the Middle East, prospects for winter cereals are poor in the north of Syria and north and east of Iraq due to poor rainfall and poor socio-economic conditions since autumn 2021. In contrast, biomass of winter crops is still close to average in Iran and in Yemen land preparation is ongoing under favourable conditions.
  • In West Africa, land preparation and sowing activities for the first maize season are starting in the southern bimodal parts of the region along the coast of the Gulf of Guinea with the onset of seasonal rains in March. Rainfall conditions were average over the past month; however slightly below-average vegetation conditions are observed in southern Nigeria, Togo, Ghana and parts of Cote d’Ivoire. The food security situation is very deteriorated in the region with about 38.3 million people forecast to be in crisis (CH Phase 3) and above by June-August 2022 if no action is taken according to the latest CH analyses in March 2022 (PREGEC communique-March 2022).
  • In Central Asia, biomass of winter crops is close to or above-average, however with below-average rainfall forecast for the next 3 months, irrigation will be critical for crop production. In Afghanistan, biomass of winter cereals is close to average in most regions, however a very large part of the population (up to 95%) suffers from food insecurity. In South Asia, prospects are favourable for Rabi crops (winter cereals) and Boro rice in Pakistan and Bangladesh respectively. In Sri Lanka, harvest of main season (Maha) rice and maize has been finalised with close to average prospects; however, fertiliser and fuel shortages are likely to decrease production.
  • In South-East Asia, dry season rice is growing under favourable conditions and prospects are positive. In Indonesia, wet season rice planted from November to March is in good condition thanks to favourable rainfall.
  • In Central America, harvest of third season maize-beans (Apante-Postrera tardia) concluded with average production for the region (). The overall 2021 cereal production is close to the 5-year average, with Honduras and Nicaragua slightly below. Total cereal output is estimated below the 5-year average for Haiti. Land preparation has started for the main season in Guatemala and Honduras, whereas rice is in the growing stage in Nicaragua (irrigated-main) and in Honduras (second season). In the Caribbean, sowing of main season maize and rice has started under favourable conditions, except in parts of Cuba.


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Food is often scarce in countries afflicted by fragility, conflict and violence. But solutions require more than putting food on the table today. To truly help those caught in often terrifying situations, it’s important to look at how they will be able to eat and provide food for their familiie tomorrow and beyond – and that requires focusing on agriculture. Holger Kray, World Bank Program Manager for Agriculture and Food in Eastern and Southern Africa, explains the role of agriculture in these difficult settings.

Q. From your experience, what is the relationship between conflict and hunger?
A. There's a commonality between all the fragile and conflict affected states. Their per capita income is usually persistently low, so people cannot afford to buy high quality foods and a diversified diet. And those who produce food cannot afford to buy the most critical inputs, such as seeds, fertilizers and good animal feed. Because of that, extreme poverty is increasing. This is almost like a vicious cycle.

There are also disruptions to food systems. For instance, products are being produced but they don't reach the consumer due to shortages in energy or logistics.

In addition, in fragile and conflict-affected countries, the public sector may not be as efficient in rolling out policies and making decisions about the stewardship of natural resources.

Q. What are the impacts of climate change in these situations?
A. Climate change is the greatest threat to food security that we've seen. And it's probably one of the greatest challenges that the World Bank is facing in its assistance to countries.  

Twenty years ago, a food security crisis resulting from severe weather in Africa would occur about once every 12 years. It now occurs every two and a half years. It’s much too frequent for any country, region or farm to recover from the impact of these shocks.

In countries such as Malawi or Madagascar, you now see it every two to three years. These are countries that only have one rainy season per year. They can only produce maize once a year. If that rain season fails to come, there's no food production. If a rainstorm comes right when the corn starts to grow, it washes away the crops, then the crops are gone for the year.

Q. How has COVID-19 impacted these situations?
A. Because of COVID-19 lockdown measures, per capita income GDP declined even further. Poverty rates in fragile countries have increased, and food insecurity worsened. Food price inflation these days is much higher in fragile and conflict affected countries. Food price inflation this year in Africa is about 12% on average, year over year. It's 30-40% in conflict affected countries.

Q. But it's not only about COVID. No, or even getting emergency aid to people.  Agriculture itself is key. So how does it work in such dangerous situations?
A. Agriculture provides food, jobs and income. Agriculture also creates inclusion. It is usually the sector in which women not only find dignity, but really have a voice in which they take important decisions. It is often underestimated how important the agriculture and food sector is for inclusion of the marginalized populations.

Agriculture is also about landscape and resilience. If you have nude landscapes without any vegetation or that are no longer cultivated, these landscapes are quite often much more prone to catastrophic weather events. The presence of trees, grass and pasture hold the soil much better, add to water retention capacity and bind carbon in the soil.

Summing up, agriculture plays a very central role. It’s not the solution to every challenge that countries face in fragile and conflict-affected situations, but it is much more than just a sector that only produces food.

Q. So how does the World Bank work to promote agriculture in these situations?
A. The World Bank's main mission is to focus on long-term development, helping countries to build systems, infrastructure, and capacity to avoid fragile and conflict situations or to recover after such catastrophic impacts. We are not a rapid response agency, but we do have rapid response activities, such as food aid or feed aid.

Livelihood kits is one example. After crops have been washed away, we quickly help supply farmers with seed and fertilizer to produce food for the next season. This is what we typically do when we work with governments after natural disasters.

Something relatively new in our “response portfolio” is the Early Response Financing which we can deploy at the early onset of a potential food crisis, to avoid catastrophic impacts on the population later on.

South Sudan is a concrete example. It’s continues to be affected by hunger, extreme climate shocks such as flooding, and conflict. We've recently deployed two projects that are being implemented in parallel. One is an emergency locust response project where we areworking with communities through the government to improve local surveillance and locust control, help restore livelihoods, and help the country to build systems so that in the future it is better prepared for locust outbreaks. All these actions arepart of an emergency response. 

In parallel, we have deployed a resilient agricultural livelihoods project. This project helps South Sudan to develop better agriculture productivity in parts of the country are fertile  and not affected by conflict so that that the nation can build a strong foundation to feed itself in future.

Q. Have you seen agriculture projects that have made a difference and supported a return to normalcy in fragile and conflict settings?
A. Agriculture is a part of a response strategy. It might be one of the most important one, but it is not the only ones. It's always a combination of a range of efforts which include agriculture and food, but also focus on job creation, livelihood restoration, trade, economic growth, macroeconomic stability -- all the things that need to be present for development to take place.

An example is northern Uganda at the border of South Sudan. Two decades ago, violence in the region dominated international news. If you go to northern Uganda now, what you’d see unfolding is an agricultural revolution. There is a really vibrant private sector that works with farmers and provides technical assistance, telling farmers how to better use inputs, how to better grow, collect and market crops.To a certain degree, northern Uganda has become a critical supplier for food security efforts managed by the World Food Program in neighboring South Sudan.

Q. With all of this, what role does the private sector play?
A. Agriculture is inherently a private sector activity because all the farmers, whether male or female, small or large, are entrepreneurs. The state's only role in guiding agriculture is to devise a policy framework that delivers incentives and a regulatory environment for farmers as private actors to develop and produce and prosper.

Private corporations, traders and downstream businesses have a critical role to play. They are the ones who supply seeds, fertilizers, insurance, banking, machinery, maintenance services among other things. In fragile and conflict settings, the private sector often functions in the gray economy, the undocumented economy, but it's very active.

The private sector also has a role in mobilizing financing for development by investing in these countries. International and bilateral organizations, as well as foundations, cannot meet the agriculture development needs of entire continents on their own.

This is why the World Bank Group does not only focus on the public sector side. The International Finance Corporation (IFC) specializes in private sector development, helping enterprises to grow and make a greater contribution to development.

Meanwhile, our Multilateral Investment Guarantee Agency (MIGA) helps cross-border investors and lenders to deal with non-commercial and political risks, breach of contract, and currency inconvertibility. If you were an international investor thinking about investing in a fragile country, MIGA could insure part of your risk. This type of insurance is an important ingredient to attract international private sector funds.


The article was sourced from this website Knowledge Centre for Global Food and Nutrition Security

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10047999498?profile=RESIZE_710xFood and You 2 is a biannual survey which measures self-reported consumer knowledge, attitudes and behaviours related to food safety and other food issues amongst adults in England, Wales, and Northern Ireland.

The survey is primarily carried out online using a methodology known as ‘push-to-web’.

Fieldwork was conducted between 28 April 2021 and 25 June 2021. A total of 6,271 adults from 4,338 households across England, Wales and Northern Ireland completed the survey.

Topics covered in the Food and You 2: Wave 3 Key Findings report include:

  • Confidence in food safety, authenticity and the food supply chain  
  • Concerns about food  
  • Food security
  • Food shopping and labelling 
  • Online platforms 
  • Food-related behaviours and eating habits. 


Main findings

  • Most respondents (90%) reported that they were confident that the food they buy is safe to eat
  • More than 8 in 10 (83%) respondents were confident that the information on food labels is accurate
  • Almost three quarters of respondents (73%) reported that they had confidence in the food supply chain
  • Three quarters (75%) of respondents who had at least some knowledge of the FSA reported that they trusted the FSA to make sure ‘food is safe and what it says it is’
  • Most respondents (80%) had no concerns about the food they eat, and only 20% of respondents reported that they had a concern. The most common prompted concerns, from a given list of food related issues, were related to the amount of sugar in food (63%), and food waste (61%).
  • Across England, Wales, and Northern Ireland, 85% of respondents were classified as food secure (72% high, 13% marginal) and 15% of respondents were classified as food insecure (9% low, 6% very low)
  • Most respondents reported that they often check the use-by (84%) or best before (82%) date when they have bought food.
  • Most respondents (83%) who go food shopping and take into consideration a person who has a food allergy or intolerance were confident that the information provided on food labelling allows them to identify foods that will cause a bad or unpleasant physical reaction
  • Around half (52%) of respondents had ordered food or drink via on online ordering and delivery company (for example, Just Eat, Deliveroo, Uber Eats) and 30% had ordered via an online marketplace (for example Amazon, Gumtree, Etsy)
  • Eating habits had changed for most respondents in the last 12 months, with only 19% of respondents indicating that there had been no change in their eating habits

Read final report and technical report.


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UK Food Security Report 2021

9918500874?profile=RESIZE_710x This report is an analysis of statistical data on food security in the United Kingdom.

It is the first in a series of reports which will be published under a new duty in the Agriculture Act 2020 to report to Parliament on food security in the United Kingdom at least once every three years.

The UK Food Security Report (UKFSR) examines past, current, and predicted trends relevant to food security, to present the best available and impartial analysis of food security in the UK, and to lay the groundwork for future Food Security Reports.

Food security is a complex and multi-faceted issue. To address the subject’s many diverse aspects, the UKFSR is structured around five principal ‘themes’, each addressing an important component of modern-day food security in the UK. They are as follows: global food availability, which describes supply and demand issues, trends and risk on a global scale, and how they may affect UK food supply;
UK food supply, which looks at the UK’s main sources of food at home and overseas; supply chain resilience, which outlines the physical, economic, and human infrastructure that underlies the food supply chain, and that chain’s vulnerabilities; household-level food security, which deals with issues of affordability and access to food; and food safety and consumer confidence, which details food crime and safety issues.

The report draws on a broad range of published statistical data from government and other sources. These quantitative sources are supplemented with case studies and qualitative analysis where necessary and helpful. In some cases, where quantitative evidence is not available due to data being limited or confidential, or where the report references recent events which are not yet reflected in published statistics, only qualitative analysis is available.

What is food security?
Food security has many dimensions. As a topic, it encompasses the state of global agriculture and markets on which the UK is reliant; the sources of raw
materials and foodstuffs in the UK and abroad; the manufacturing, wholesale, and retail industries that ultimately bring food to shelves and plates, and their complex supply chains of inputs and logistics; and the systems of inspection that allow consumers to be confident their food is safe, authentic, and of a high standard. 

Accordingly, this report examines the issue of whether the UK is food secure across five ‘themes.’

  • Theme 1: Global Food Availability
  • Theme 2: UK Food Supply Sources
  • Theme 3: Supply Chain Resilience
  • Theme 4: Food Security at Household Level
  • Theme 5: Food Safety and Consumer Confidence: the activities of the Food Authenticity Network and Centres of Expertise are featured in this theme.

Read full report (pdf version) and a fully accessible HTML will be available shortly.

As this is the first in what will be a series of reports to be published, government is very happy to receive written feedback on the content of the UKFSR at and there is also an online questionnaire you can find here.

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The assessment is based on 377 documents covering 62 countries from Africa, Asia, Europe, Oceania and the Americas.

The analysis reveals that the dimension of food security that has been most affected is accessibility. Both financial (affordability) and physical access to food have been disrupted, in particular in urban areas and in low and middle-income countries (LMICs). As a result, proximity and convenience have been affected with a degradation in food choice and diversity.

In contrast, there is no clear evidence that the availability of food has been affected beyond some initial disruptions and there is not enough information to provide robust conclusions about the effects of the pandemic on the utilization of food (safety or quality).

Finally, the impact of COVID-19 on the nutritional status of people is still poorly documented but expected to be substantial in the long run.

To download the publication, go here: Impacts of COVID-19 on people’s food security: Foundations for a more resilient food system

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More than 32 million of the world’s poorest people face being pulled back into extreme poverty because of COVID-19, leading UN economists said on Thursday, highlighting data showing that the pandemic is likely to cause the worst economic crisis in decades among least developed countries (LDCs). 

In a call for urgent investment and support from the wider international community, the UN trade and development agency, UNCTAD, warned that the new coronavirus risked reversing years of “painstaking progress” in poverty reduction, nutrition and education.


To read the article, please click below:

Revealed: The cost of the pandemic on world's poorest countries

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Global Report on Food Crises 2020

The Global Report on Food Crises tracks the numbers and locations of acutely food-insecure people most in need of emergency food, nutrition and livelihood assistance during the peak or worst point in 2019.

The report is the result of a joint, consensus-based assessment of acute food insecurity situations around the world by 16 partner organizations.

It is facilitated by the Food Security Information Network, which provides the core coordination and technical support to pillar 1 of the Global Network Against Food Crises.


Click here for more information and to download the report: Full report - 2020 Global Report on Food Crises Joint analysis for better decisions

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7966618088?profile=RESIZE_584x FAO has published a report for #worldfoodsafetyday in all 6 UN languages:







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USDA’s Economic Research Service (ERS) has published its annual International Food Security Assessment, which shows that the worldwide coronavirus pandemic has made food security worse.

The annual report determines how much access people in 76 low and middle-income countries have to food. The answer to that question requires tracking incomes, food prices, and other economic factors including agriculture production and market conditions.

“In the 76 low- and middle-income countries examined in the report, the number of people considered food insecure in 2020 was estimated at almost 761 million people or 19.8 percent of the total population. The shock to GDP from COVID-19 is projected to increase the number of food-insecure people by 83.5 million people in 2020 to 844.5 million and increase the share of the population that is food insecure to 22 percent.”

Read full article.


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