South Sudan: Acute Food Insecurity Situation for January 2017 and Projections for February - April 2017 and May - July 2017
Extreme levels of food insecurity and localized famine conditions
01.01.2017 > 31.07.2017


& next steps


According to the IPC Analysis update conducted by the South Sudan IPC Technical Working Group (TWG) and endorsed by the government: 

The food security situation in South Sudan continues to deteriorate, with 4.9 million (about 42% of population) estimated to be severely food insecure (IPC Phases 3, 4, and 5), from February to April 2017. This is projected to increase to 5.5 million people, (47% of the national population) at the height of the 2017 lean season in July. The magnitude of these food insecure populations is unprecedented across all periods. 

In Greater Unity, some counties are classified in Famine or high likelihood/risk of Famine. In the absence of full quantitative data sets (food consumption, livelihoods changes, nutrition and mortality), analyses were complemented with professional judgment of the Global IPC Emergency Review Committee and South Sudan IPC Technical Working Group (SS IPC TWG) members. The available data are consistent with Phase 5 (Famine) classification and include available humanitarian assistance plans at the time of the analysis. In January 2017, Leer County was classified in Famine, Koch at elevated likelihood that Famine was happening and Mayendit had avoided Famine through delivery of humanitarian assistance. From February to July 2017, Leer and Mayendit are classified in Famine, while Koch is classified as Famine likely to happen. Panyijiar was in Phase 4 (Emergency) in January and is likely to avoid a Famine if the humanitarian assistance is delivered as planned from February to July 2017. With consistent, adequate, and timely humanitarian interventions, the Famine classification could be reversed with many lives saved.

Humanitarian assistance throughout 2016 not only sustained but also improved food security in many areas. It is of paramount importance that assistance not only continues in 2017, but scales up in the face of mounting food insecurity across the country. The expected response to Famine-affected areas in former Unity must not sacrifice much needed assistance to the other severely food insecure areas of the country. There exists a narrow window of opportunity during the dry season to pre-position and deliver humanitarian assistance to prevent drastic increases in food insecurity through the lean season that peaks in July. The overstretching of current humanitarian resources and capabilities during the projected worsening of food insecurity is a distinct possibility, raising the risk of an insufficient response to further deterioration.

*The IPC current and projected classifications are based on information available as of January 24, 2017. An IPC Update is scheduled for April, 2017 to capture any changes occurring in the interim.

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