20% drop in food-insecure households 

Source: 20% drop in food-insecure households -Newsday Zimbabwe

File pic: World Food Programme (WFP)

AT LEAST 3,9 million are in urgent need of food aid, new data shows.

According to the World Food Programme (WFP)’s food security and markets monitoring report released recently, this is a 20% decrease from 4,8 million registered in January before the harvest season.

 “Approximately 3,9 million people were estimated to be facing insufficient food consumption during the first week of April 2023, decreasing by almost 0,3 million people when compared to 4,2 million in the first week of March and by 0,9 million from the 4,8 million reported during the first week of January 2023,” the report read.

“All provinces experienced a decrease in the prevalence of insufficient food consumption within the three months under consideration, except for Bulawayo and Harare which increased by 10 and 5 percentage points respectively.

“The improvement could be attributed to the distribution of lean season food assistance by the government, WFP and partners, which is aimed at reaching 100% of the population projected to be food insecure during this period, as well as the green harvest in some areas.”

The number of people estimated to be resorting to ‘crisis and above’ food-based coping strategies was estimated at 7,2 million, a decrease from 7.4 million reported during the first week of January.

The findings show that in typical deficit-producing areas, households are likely to continue selling livestock to earn income for food and non-food needs.

According to findings of a 2023 first round crop and livestock report, the total area planted under all crops marginally increased by 8% from 3 387 038 hectares in 2021/22 season to 3 674 149 hectares in 2022/23.

The highest increase was reported for sunflower (206%) and finger millet (56%).