Protracted civil insecurity, recurrent drought, the fuel crisis and the reduction in fuel subsidy, an increase in food commodity prices and the absence of a strategic food reserve are the major causes of emergency food insecurity conditions in Yemen. During 2014, about 4.8 million people (18.3% of the population of Yemen) are under Emergency, 5.8 million people under Crisis. 334,037 people are internally displaced and 215,381 are returnees.
During the period May-July 2014, the fuel shortage crisis and price rise contributed to an increase in food prices, further reducing food access to the poorest households who rely heavily on the market. Agriculture employs more than 54% of the work force although 85-90% of Yemenis depend on commercial food imports. Agricultural production was constrained by poor/late rainfall combined with high input prices and fuel crisis. This also reduced employment opportunities and household incomes. In addition, very poor health facilities, limited water and environmental sanitations are the common features for the majority of the households in the worst affected areas.
The wide spread civil insecurity affected the urban and rural poor livelihoods and income sources which eroded the purchasing power to fulfill household basic needs. The overall current food security situation shows a slight improvement compared to the previous years, however, there are still 10.6 million people (40% of the population) under the Emergency and Crisis phases. If the conflict, instability and other food insecurity drivers do not improve, livelihoods and food security of majority of the population under phase 2 (54.2%) and 3 (22%) will deteriorate to the next worse phases.