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News article9 April 2019

Southern Africa’s crop production threatened by Cyclone Idai and prolonged drought, while planting is delayed by rainfall deficits across East Africa

ASAP hotspot assessment of 05/04/2019

According to the March edition of the JRC's Anomaly Hotspots of Agricultural Production (ASAP) assessment, the main concerns for crop and rangeland production are currently in Southern Africa due to both drought and storm impact, while early-season drought is delaying planting in East Africa’s bi-modal areas.

Main findings of the March global overview:

  • Floods, heavy rains and winds caused by Cyclone Idai led to major destruction, floods and crop losses in Southern Africa, mainly in Mozambique, Malawi and Zimbabwe. In western and central areas, prolonged drought is lowering production outlook during the final stage of the main crop production season.
  • In East Africa, below-average production of short rains in late 2018 is now followed by delayed planting and below-average early-season crop conditions. In addition, the seasonal weather forecast from April to June is indicating below-average cumulative rainfall.
  • Winter cereals planted in October/November in the Middle East, North Africa and Central Asia generally continue to show above-average conditions, while some water stress has emerged in March in Morocco.
  • Conditions for irrigated rice production are generally good in South-East Asia, with the exception of central and north-east Thailand.

The next assessment is scheduled for the first week of May 2019

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Publication date
9 April 2019