Food Security Outlook Update

Average to above-average harvest production expected at the national level

November 2014
2014-Q4-1-2-NG-en

IPC 2.0 Acute Food Insecurity Phase

1: Minimal
2: Stressed
3: Crisis
4: Emergency
5: Famine
Concentration of displaced people
Would likely be at least one phase worse without current or programmed humanitarian assistance
FEWS NET classification is IPC-compatible. IPC-compatible analysis follows key IPC protocols but does not necessarily reflect the consensus of national food security partners.

IPC 2.0 Acute Food Insecurity Phase

1: Minimal
2: Stressed
3+: Crisis or higher
Would likely be at least one phase worse without
current or programmed humanitarian assistance
FEWS NET classification is IPC-compatible. IPC-compatible analysis follows key IPC protocols but does not necessarily reflect the consensus of national food security partners.
FEWS NET Remote Monitoring countries use a colored outline to represent the highest IPC classification in areas of concern.

IPC 2.0 Acute Food Insecurity Phase

Presence countries:
1: Minimal
2: Stressed
3: Crisis
4: Emergency
5: Famine
Concentration of displaced people
Remote monitoring
countries:
1: Minimal
2: Stressed
3+: Crisis or higher
Would likely be at least one phase worse without
current or programmed humanitarian assistance
FEWS NET Remote Monitoring countries use a colored outline to represent the highest IPC classification in areas of concern.

Key Messages

  • The cholera outbreak in conflict prone areas of the northeast continues in November. Households who have remained in areas worst affected by conflict in the northeast will experience well below-average harvests and continue to have limited access to income-earning activities and markets. Through March these areas will continue to face Crisis (IPC Phase 3) acute food insecurity.

  • In other parts of Borno, Yobe and Adamawa States that are somewhat less impacted by the conflict, harvests are still expected to be significantly below-average. Households in these areas will also have limited participation in off-season activities due to security concerns. Northern Borno and Yobe and southern Adamawa will be Stressed (IPC Phase 2) through March.

  • Good main harvests continue across much of the rest of the country leading to increased market stocks, reduced market demand, declining staple food prices and increased agriculture related labor opportunities for poor households. Strengthened food availability, diversity and access is leading to Minimal (IPC Phase 1) acute food insecurity for much of the country through March 2015.

Current Situation

Cholera outbreak: Médecins Sans Frontières reported on November 3rd that the number of cases of cholera in Maiduguri, Borno State was estimated to be over 4,500, with about 70 deaths. An October report from the UN Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs noted the outbreak had been affecting people internally displaced by conflict in the region, particularly in the host communities of Gwange, Maisandari, Bolori, Zannari, Mashmari and Maimusari wards and the IDP camps in greater Maiduguri.

Civil insecurity:  According to FEWS NET local monitors in the northeast, Boko Haram conflict-related insecurity has recently been most severe near the border between Borno and Adamawa States. The Nigerian military and local defense groups have been escalating their campaign against insurgents in Chibok in Borno State and Mubi in Adamawa State, though most occupied areas (Michika, Madagali, Gujba, Buni Yadi, Chibk, Gwoza and others) still remain under the control of Boko Haram insurgents. Conflict on both sides significantly impacts the livelihoods of local populations in the northeast. Occasional attacks by the insurgents continue to spread to previously somewhat peaceful areas of the country, including in Bauchi, Gombe, Niger and Kano States.

Main harvest: A recent FEWS NET assessment to the north revealed that the harvest of major cereals (millet, maize, rice) and cash crops (cowpea, groundnut, bambara nut) continues. Tuber harvests (yam and cassava) in the south are underway normally. The annual joint CILSS/FAO/FEWS NET/National Government annual crop assessment indicates that harvest totals at the national level are expected to be average to above average despite events of localized flooding. This is corroborated by the annual crop performance survey conducted by the National Agricultural Extension and Research Liaison Services at Ahmadu Bello University.

The recent FEWS NET field assessment to the north noted the harvesting of crops like maize and rice is delayed in southern parts of Kebbi and Niger states due to proloned dry spells experienced during the onset of the season. This delayed crop planting or led to replanting, delaying the harvest. Harvests of longer cycle sorghum crops in Niger State will be impacted, too, and harvested in December. Despite the delay in harvesting, a significant impact in yields is not expected as most affected crops recovered while others were replanted as the rainfall resumed.

Markets and trade: Market food stocks and supplies across most monitored markets is increasing as the main harvest continues. Trade flows across most of the country are within normal levels. In Maiduguri, though, reports from the FEWS NET market enumerator indicates that staple food stocks on Monday market, while increasing somewhat marginally in this post harvest period, are significantly below average. Similarly, as the conflict escalates in the northeast and some other parts of the northern region, trade flows remain restricted in the northeast due to fear for reprisal attacks by the insurgents. Traders evade these conflict areas, reducing supply in an area where harvests of key staples are expected to be severly limited. This is also compounded by the communal conflict in central states, further limiting trade flows.

Food prices: Prices on most monitored markets have declined or remained stable relative to previous months and last year. This is attributable to the inflow of new harvests to markets. The prices of tubers, cereals and legumes is declining gradually across the country as the main harvest continues. Prices of yellow and white gari has reduced by about 19 and 26 percent respectively on Bodija market relative to September and prices for the same commodities has reduced by 41 and 28 percent respectively, on Mile 12 market, Lagos over the same period. Similarly, yam price declined by 24 and 72 percent relative to previous month on Bodija and Lagos markets, respectively. The price of millet reduced from NGN58/kg to NGN55/kg in Kano, and decline from NGN10,000/100kg to NGN6,000/100kg on Minna market, Niger state. However, millet prices remain stable at higher levels relative to markets in neighboring regions on Monday market, Maiduguri at NGN70/kg.

Dry season production: Dry season activities are underway as usual. Most farmers are engaged in land preparation activities, while others are planting onions, pepper, and vegetables. It is expected that there will be an increase in dry season activities, particularly in Sokoto, Kebbi and Niger States, in the production of onions, pepper, vegetables and rice due to increased awareness and access to inputs through the Government of Nigeria sponsored Growth Enhancement Scheme (GES) program.

Updated Assumptions

The current situation is in line with the assumptions used to develop FEWS NET’s most likely scenario for October to March 2015. A full discussion of the scenario is available in the October 2014 to March 2015 Food Security Outlook.

Projected Outlook tMarch 2015

Cholera outbreak: Médecins Sans Frontières reported on November 3rd that the number of cases of cholera in Maiduguri, Borno State was estimated to be over 4,500, with about 70 deaths. An October report from the UN Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs noted the outbreak had been affecting people internally displaced by conflict in the region, particularly in the host communities of Gwange, Maisandari, Bolori, Zannari, Mashmari and Maimusari wards and the IDP camps in greater Maiduguri.

Civil insecurity:  According to FEWS NET local monitors in the northeast, Boko Haram conflict-related insecurity has recently been most severe near the border between Borno and Adamawa States. The Nigerian military and local defense groups have been escalating their campaign against insurgents in Chibok in Borno State and Mubi in Adamawa State, though most occupied areas (Michika, Madagali, Gujba, Buni Yadi, Chibk, Gwoza and others) still remain under the control of Boko Haram insurgents. Conflict on both sides significantly impacts the livelihoods of local populations in the northeast. Occasional attacks by the insurgents continue to spread to previously somewhat peaceful areas of the country, including in Bauchi, Gombe, Niger and Kano States.

Main harvest: A recent FEWS NET assessment to the north revealed that the harvest of major cereals (millet, maize, rice) and cash crops (cowpea, groundnut, bambara nut) continues. Tuber harvests (yam and cassava) in the south are underway normally. The annual joint CILSS/FAO/FEWS NET/National Government annual crop assessment indicates that harvest totals at the national level are expected to be average to above average despite events of localized flooding. This is corroborated by the annual crop performance survey conducted by the National Agricultural Extension and Research Liaison Services at Ahmadu Bello University.

The recent FEWS NET field assessment to the north noted the harvesting of crops like maize and rice is delayed in southern parts of Kebbi and Niger states due to prolonged dry spells experienced during the onset of the season. This delayed crop planting or led to replanting, delaying the harvest. Harvests of longer cycle sorghum crops in Niger State will be impacted, too, and harvested in December. Despite the delay in harvesting, a significant impact in yields is not expected as most affected crops recovered while others were replanted as the rainfall resumed.

Markets and trade: Market food stocks and supplies across most monitored markets is increasing as the main harvest continues. Trade flows across most of the country are within normal levels. In Maiduguri, though, reports from the FEWS NET market enumerator indicates that staple food stocks on Monday market, while increasing somewhat marginally in this post-harvest period, are significantly below average. Similarly, as the conflict escalates in the northeast and some other parts of the northern region, trade flows remain restricted in the northeast due to fear for reprisal attacks by the insurgents. Traders evade these conflict areas, reducing supply in an area where harvests of key staples are expected to be severely limited. This is also compounded by the communal conflict in central states, further limiting trade flows.

Food prices: Prices on most monitored markets have declined or remained stable relative to previous months and last year. This is attributable to the inflow of new harvests to markets. The prices of tubers, cereals and legumes is declining gradually across the country as the main harvest continues. Prices of yellow and white gari has reduced by about 19 and 26 percent respectively on Bodija market relative to September and prices for the same commodities has reduced by 41 and 28 percent respectively, on Mile 12 market, Lagos over the same period. Similarly, yam price declined by 24 and 72 percent relative to previous month on Bodija and Lagos markets, respectively. The price of millet reduced from NGN58/kg to NGN55/kg in Kano, and decline from NGN10,000/100kg to NGN6,000/100kg on Minna market, Niger state. However, millet prices remain stable at higher levels relative to markets in neighboring regions on Monday market, Maiduguri at NGN70/kg.

Dry season production: Dry season activities are underway as usual. Most farmers are engaged in land preparation activities, while others are planting onions, pepper, and vegetables. It is expected that there will be an increase in dry season activities, particularly in Sokoto, Kebbi and Niger States, in the production of onions, pepper, vegetables and rice due to increased awareness and access to inputs through the Government of Nigeria sponsored Growth Enhancement Scheme (GES) program.

About this Update

This monthly report covers current conditions as well as changes to the projected outlook for food insecurity in this country. It updates FEWS NET’s quarterly Food Security Outlook. Learn more about our work here.

About FEWS NET

The Famine Early Warning Systems Network is a leading provider of early warning and analysis on food insecurity. Created by USAID in 1985 to help decision-makers plan for humanitarian crises, FEWS NET provides evidence-based analysis on some 28 countries. Implementing team members include NASA, NOAA, USDA, and USGS, along with Chemonics International Inc. and Kimetrica. Read more about our work.

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