Good harvest forecast for West Africa


Food security experts met from 12-14 September in Lomé to analyse the ongoing agro-pastoral campaign and harvest forecasts for 2019 in the Sahel and West Africa. With the exception of central and western areas of the Sahel, the food production forecast is overall average or good. The rainy season started early in the central and eastern parts of the Sahel and late in the western areas, notably Cabo Verde, Mauritania and Senegal. The total rainfall until end of August was higher than average levels overall. If there is no major pest or another unexpected shock, cereal production is estimated at about 66-73 million tonnes. This would be a 10-20% increase compared to the five-year average, thus much faster than the average population growth. Fodder supply for livestock breeding remains a concern in northern Senegal, Mauritania, central Mali and western Niger. Despite various food assistance interventions, the global acute malnutrition rates are above the 10-15% thresholds in some areas of Burkina Faso, Chad, Mali, Mauritania and Niger. Civil insecurity in the Lake Chad basin, northern and central Mali and the Liptako-Gourma region remains the key threat to food and nutrition security in the region. Food security stakeholders are conducting a joint mission to assess the food and nutrition situation. However, four countries -- Côte d’Ivoire, Guinea-Bissau, Liberia and Sierra Leone -- have not been able to conduct continuous agricultural surveys due to financial constraints. Nevertheless, all countries in the region participated in this year’s Cadre harmonisé analysis cycle to identify vulnerable areas and ensure timely response interventions. The next PREGEC meeting, conducted within the Food Crisis Prevention Network (RPCA), will take stock of the food and nutrition situation. Meanwhile, experts made a series of recommendations to governments, CILSS and development partners.


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