The European Union, WFP and FAO have joined forces to coordinate the compilation of analyses to increase the impact of humanitarian and resilience responses through the preparation of the “Global report on Food Crises”. The report enhances coordination and decision-making through a neutral analysis that informs program planning and implementation.

Currently, the world is faced with an unprecedented call for action at a moment in which four countries have been identified as at risk of famine, and demand for humanitarian and resilience assistance is escalating. Against this background, informing the global and national food security community on the risk of food crises and on the severity of such crises is of fundamental importance, - GLOBAL REPORT ON FOOD CRISES, 2017

Bringing together credible and globally accepted findings

Partial geographical coverage and a lack of comparable data within a standardised system make it difficult to get a full global picture of food crises at any given time.

In 2016, to increase the inclusiveness and transparency of the report, the European Commission invited FAO and WFP to contribute by providing additional food security data and analysis.

The Food Security Information Network (FSIN) is a global initiative co-sponsored by FAO, WFP and IFPRI to strengthen food and nutrition security information systems for producing reliable and accurate data to guide analysis and decision-making. 

The Global Report on Food Crises 2017 is therefore the result of a consultative process established to involve a wide range of stakeholders who bring together credible and globally accepted findings from all major risk analysis and early warning systems.

The report is designed to:

  • summarize available data and analysis from global, regional and national food security monitoring systems;
  • add value by bringing together this complex data and information to provide an accurate, comprehensive , transparent assessment of existing food security analysis,
  • identify key data and analytical gaps and
  • drive improved coordination and informed planning and implementation for humanitarian and resilience-building initiatives,
  • instigate and inform better decision-making to increase resilience for the food security of the world’s most vulnerable people and “to ensure that no one is left behind” (Highlevel Political Forum on Sustainable Development, 2016).

The report retraces

the critical issues that have emerged during 2016. It has a cascading structure, presenting country-by-country analysis to build a global picture of the prevalence and magnitude of food insecurity. 

Globally, 108 million people in 2016 were reported to be facing Crisis level food insecurity or worse (IPC Phase 3 and above). This represents a 35 percent increase compared to 2015 when the figure was almost 80 million.

The acute and wide-reaching effects of conflicts left significant numbers of food insecure people in need of urgent assistance in Yemen (17 million); Syria (7.0 million); South Sudan (4.9 million); Somalia (2.9 million); northeast Nigeria (4.7 million), Burundi (2.3 million) and Central African Republic (2 million). The immediate outlook points to worsening conditions in some locations, with risk of famine in isolated areas of northeast Nigeria, South Sudan, Somalia and Yemen.

Conflict causes widespread displacement (internal and external), protracting food insecurity and placing a burden on host communities. The populations worst affected are those of Syria (6.3 million Internally Displaced People) and Syrian refugees in neighbouring countries (4.8 million); Iraq (3.1 million); Yemen (3.2 million), South Sudan (3 million), Somalia (2.1 million) and northeast Nigeria (2.1 million).

In some countries, food security has been undermined by El Niño, which largely manifested in drought conditions that damaged agricultural livelihoods. The countries most affected are in eastern and southern Africa and include Somalia, Ethiopia (9.7 million), Madagascar (0.8 million in the Grand Sud), Malawi (6.7 million), Mozambique (1.9 million) and Zimbabwe (4.1 million). Projections for early 2017 indicate an increase in the severity of food insecurity in these regions. This is particularly the case in southern and south-eastern Ethiopia, Kenya and Somalia.

Record staple food prices, notably in some southern African countries, Nigeria and South Sudan, also severely constrained food access for vulnerable populations, acutely aggravating food insecurity and the risk of malnutrition.

El Niño-induced weather patterns and conflicts were the main drivers of intensified food insecurity in 2016. The persistent nature of these drivers, and their associated impacts, has weakened households’ capacity to cope, undermining their resilience and ability to recover from future shocks. The food crises in 2016 were both widespread and severe, affecting entire national populations, such as in Yemen, or causing acute damage in localized areas, such as in northeast Nigeria. These shocks were not bound by national borders and the spillover effects had a significant impact on neighbouring countries.

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