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Famine Early Warning Systems Network (FEWSNET)

Tanzania Food Security Update

Famine Early Warning Systems Network (FEWSNET)

November 2005

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Summary and implications

The vuli rains that normally begin towards the end of September in the bimodal rainfall areas of northern, northeastern and northern coastal zones of the country have been delayed. This delay is likely to shorten the length of the growing season, which in turn will cause a drop in the total production from the vuli harvest, which contributes 15 percent of the total national crop harvest.

Water level in lakes and rivers are low. If the situation continues, it is likely to affect irrigated crop farming and flood recession agriculture along the flood plains of Rufiji, Pangani and Ruaha river basins.

The delayed onset of rains has also led a drop in the fresh water fish catch, while windy weather and rising oil prices have prevented fishermen from deep water fishing in Mafia and Kilwa. Supplies of fish at Dar es Salaam’s main fish market have declined as prices have increased, and fish is no longer affordable to poorer households.

Although pasture conditions are below normal due to the delayed onset of the rains, animal conditions have not deteriorated. In the northeast, pasture availability improved in November, which will support livestock production and help stabilize pastoralist livelihoods.

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