Burundi: Acute Food Insecurity Situation May-June 2016
Approximately 2.3 million, 23% of the population, is estimated in Crisis (IPC Phase 3) and Emergency (IPC Phase 4)
01.05.2016 > 30.06.2016
MAY - JUNE 2016 



& next steps


Burundi ranks first among the world's poorest countries with a GDP of US $ 315.2 / capita. The global hunger index presents Burundi as one of the countries with a very alarming situation (Index> 30). Compared with neighboring countries, Burundi is the most starved state in East Africa. This context of fragility is accentuated by extreme poverty where more than 64% of the population currently lives below the poverty line.

The dry lands of the eastern region and wet lands, except the province of Ngozi, are classified into IPC Phase 3, Crisis, from May to June 2016. Some municipalities located around Bujumbura, Nyanza-Lac and Giharo are also classified in IPC Phase 3. The number of people in IPC Phase 3 (Crisis) and Phase 4 (Emergency) is approximately 2.3 million, or 23% of all population.

Family farming, the main source of food and livelihood for nearly 90% of the population, dramatically affected by long years of civil war, now finds itself destabilized by natural hazards and recurring natural disasters. The 2016A harvest season fairly similar to the previous year (overall only 2.1% reduction), although it failed to generate large stocks of food stocks at household level. Thanks to plentiful rainfall, there was stable production of tubers, bananas and cereals (an increase of between 0.1% and 3% from the same season last year (2015A)). However, the excess rainfall caused a 7% drop in legumes.

Since the livelihoods of rural communities are mainly based on agriculture, the major agricultural season 2016A was affected by the political tensions in the country which displaced hundreds of thousands of people to neighboring countries (UNHCR had more than 260,000 in September). Although the cropping season was generally good, the conflict made it difficult for households in some provinces, to fully capitalize on the harvest as usual. The most affected localities include the outskirts of Bujumbura (epicenter of the crisis), Central / East and North / East provinces where labor market opportunities (contribution of more than 40% of revenues) were strongly affected by the current crisis, directly or indirectly.

Moreover, the prices of the various foodstuffs remain very high compared to previous years, at the same (25-45% increase over the 10-year average), thus limiting access to adequate nutrition to many households. As a consequence of this food precariousness, the trend in the nutritional situation seems to be considerably 2014, EFSA's April 2016 MUAC data estimates the overall acute malnutrition rate at 12%, compared with less than 10% in 2014. Thanks to food and nutrition improvements, the province of Ngozi is experiencing an improvement from Phase 3 (Crisis) for several years to phase 2, an improvement also proved by a satisfactory nutritional status (MAG of 4% for an average of 6.5%). The good harvests of the 2016 season coupled with the various interventions will have been the basis of the improvement noted in the depressions of the North and the East.

In addition to the security situation, malaria, climate hazards and phytosanitary diseases, such as mosaic and bacterial wilt, are becoming concerining and should be closely followed.

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