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Tuesday, February 27, 2018

Africa to witness reduced harvests, courtesy of dry weather conditions

The lack of adequate rains and rise in hot temperatures has triggered water stress and adversely affecting crop development in several areas in Africa, reports NaijaAgroNet.

According to the Food and Agriculture Organisation (FAO) of the United Nations, this weather conditions is very high in the Southern Africa.

The latest Special Alert issued by FAO's Global Information and Early Warning System (GIEWS), indicated that while cereal stocks in the region are ample, the spell of dry weather and erratic rains earlier in the season signals multiple risks to agricultural yields and may aggravate the impact of the Fall Armyworm pest.

Reduced harvests are "foreseen to intensify food insecurity in 2018, increasing the number of people in need of assistance," part of the alert noted.

NaijaAgroNet gathered that maize production hit a record level in 2017 in the Southern Africa subregion, a welcome development after sharp output declines in the previous year caused by an unusually strong El Niño.

Also, FAO said, Cereal production in the sub-region in 2018 is foreseen to fall due to erratic rains, along with an intense dry period in January.

NaijaAgroNet recalls that the alert comes as FAO Director-General José Graziano da Silva, spoke in Khartoum, emphasizing the importance of boosting the resilience of communities, particularly in Africa - in making sure that "Zero Hunger is possible".

Isaac Oyimah/GEE

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