About 5.29 million people in South Sudan were severely food insecure in January 2020, in a prolonged food crisis projected to worsen in the coming months. The food crisis is exacerbated by floods, insecurity and low food production. In the analysis period of January 2020, 5.29 million people (45.2% of the population) were estimated to be in Crisis (IPC Phase 3) or worse acute food insecurity, of which 1.11 million people faced Emergency (IPC Phase 4) acute food insecurity. About 40,000 people were classified in Catastrophe (IPC Phase 5) in the counties of Akobo, Duk and Ayod in Jonglei State. The Integrated Food Security Phase Classification (IPC) initiative uses phases to classify the severity and magnitude of food insecurity and malnutrition for better and more actionable information.
Compared with the same time last year, January’s 2020 levels of foods insecurity reflect a 9% reduction in the proportion of the population facing Crisis (IPC Phase 3) or worse. In the projection period (February to April 2020), 6.01 million people (51.4% of the population) will likely face Crisis (IPC Phase 3) or worse acute food insecurity, with 20,000 people in the counties of Akobo and Duk estimated to be in Catastrophe (IPC Phase 5). In the projection period of May to July 2020, 6.48 million people (55.4% of the population) will face Crisis (IPC Phase 3) or worse acute food insecurity, which is 5% lower than was projected for the 2019 lean season. Immediate scale-up of humanitarian food assistance is needed to save lives and avert total collapse of livelihoods in the affected counties particularly those with populations in Catastrophe (IPC Phase 5) and Emergency (IPC Phase 4).