Several countries in Africa south of the Sahara faced the threat of famine and high food assistance needs in 2017, and FEWS Net is reporting that little change is expected in the coming year .
The Horn of Africa will continue to face a significant food security crisis into early 2018, according to a new alert released by FEWS Net. Poor rains in March-June – the second consecutive below-average season – have exacerbated already reduced livestock and agricultural conditions in many areas of the region. In some areas, particularly Ethiopia and Somalia, rainfall totals from June 2016 to May 2017 were the lowest or second-lowest seen in over three decades.
New reports from FEWS Net and the Integrated Food Security Phase Classification (IPC) are highlighting the ongoing threat of famine in South Sudan. According to the IPC report, released on February 20, almost 5 million people are estimated to be in need of humanitarian food assistance; this accounts for 42 percent of South Sudan’s population.
Widespread drought is driving high food insecurity in several parts of East Africa, including central and southern Somalia, southeastern Ethiopia, northern and eastern Kenya, northern and eastern Tanzania, and southeastern Uganda. According to a special report released by FAO’s Global Information and Early Warning System (GIEWS), these areas received less than one-quarter of their normal rainfall from October to December.