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News article28 March 2018

Global overview of agricultural production hotspots

© EU, author Hervé Kerdiles

The latest edition of the monthly Anomaly Hotspots of Agricultural Production (ASAP) Global Overview, which reports on agricultural production of hotspot countries in Southern, East, North and West Africa, the Middle East, Central and South-east Asia, and Central America and the Caribbean, has been published today.

The report finds that recent good rainfall conditions have improved agricultural conditions in parts of Southern Africa, the Maghreb and the Middle East that were affected by early season dry spells, but that dry conditions continue to affect parts of Southern Africa, North Africa and parts of Central Asia. The report includes an interactive map that provides information on each hotspot country.

© EU, ASAP hotspot assessment of 28.03.2018

The main findings of the March overview

  • Rainfall in March has continued to improve the early season drought conditions in South Africa, while crop damage is expected to cause below-average yields in Madagascar, Lesotho, Namibia and Southern Zambia.
  • In the Maghreb, winter cereal conditions have further improved in Morocco, while water deficits remain an issue in eastern and central Algeria.
  • Early pastoral vegetation depletion following the 2017 drought in Mauritania is pushing pastoralists towards early seasonal migration.
  • In parts of Syria and Iraq, winter cereals biomass is still low despite good rainfall in February/March.
  • Dry conditions starting in October are showing a negative effect mainly on pastoral vegetation in parts of central Asia, including Afghanistan and Tajikistan, but also on crops in southern Uzbekistan and Afghanistan.

About ASAP

Anomaly Hotspots of Agricultural Production (ASAP) is an online decision support system developed by the JRC to give early warnings about hotspots of agricultural production anomalies, in order to help prevent food security crises and facilitate response planning.

ASAP provides information at two levels:

  1. Monthly assessments that identify agricultural production hotspot countries and provide food security analysts (for example in DG DEVCO and EU delegations) with summaries of the agricultural situation
  2. Ten-day automatic warnings at provincial level and weather and Earth Observation vegetation indicators for JRC and external technical experts.

ASAP supports multi-agency early warning initiatives and provides information to food security assessments, to the Integrated Food Security Phase Classification (IPC) and to the Cadre Harmonisé (a regional framework designed to prevent food crises by quickly identifying affected populations and suggesting appropriate measures to improve their food and nutrition security). It also directly feeds into the Global Agricultural Monitoring (GEOGLAM) Crop Monitor for Early Warning.

The monthly agricultural hotspots assessment is published at the end of each month on the ASAP website homepage. The automatic warnings at provincial level are updated every 10 days in the ASAP Warning Explorer.

Further information

Related Content

Anomaly Hotspots of Agricultural Production (ASAP)

ASAP Warning Explorer


Publication date
28 March 2018