Food insecurity in Angola (AfricaFiles / IPS)

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Angola: ’Not a Famine, but an Issue of Food Insecurity’

Summary & Comment: “There is food available; the issue is that because people are not producing as much food, they must buy more…And because their production has gone down, their income has also gone down so they cannot afford to buy food, and as supply falls and demand increases, prices are going up – in some cases doubling.” Government had made loans for seeds and fertilizer but many of these cannot be repaid. JK

Author: Louise Redvers
Date Written: 11 May 2012
Primary Category: Angola
Document Origin: Inter Press Service
Secondary Category: Food and Land
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Millions of Angola’s poorest families are facing critical food insecurity as a prolonged dry spell across large parts of the country has destroyed harvests and killed off livestock. Up to 500,000 children are now thought to be suffering from severe malnutrition triggered by the collapse in food production after a lengthy dry season in the first three months of this year. Currently emergency feeding centres are being set up in the worst-affected communities.

The provinces of Huambo, Bie, Benguela and Zaire in central and northern Angola are the hardest hit, but across the country both small-scale and commercial farmers are suffering. Crop yields are down by as much as 70 percent in some places. There are reports of subsistence farmers abandoning their fields altogether in a bid to find other paid work in towns and cities so that they can feed their families, and large commercial farms are laying off workers because there is no harvest to gather. Despite Angola’s enormous oil wealth and the International Monetary Fund’s forecast that GDP will swell by 9.7 percent in 2012, nearly two thirds of rural households live on less than 1.75 dollars a day.


Author: Willem Van Cotthem

Honorary Professor of Botany, University of Ghent (Belgium). Scientific Consultant for Desertification and Sustainable Development.

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