In the current period (January to March 2021), an estimated 1.6 million people across Somalia are experiencing high levels of acute food insecurity (IPC Phase 3 or above) and are in need of continued urgent action. The drivers of acute food insecurity include the compounding effects of poor and erratic rainfall distribution, flooding, desert locust infestation, the socio-economic impacts of COVID-19 and conflict.
During the projection period (April to June 2021), the food insecurity is expected to deteriorate for most population groups due to multiple risk factors. Through mid-2021, around 2.7 million people across Somalia are expected to face food consumption gaps or depletion of livelihood assets indicative of IPC Phase 3 or above conditions, in the absence of humanitarian assistance. Moreover, approximately 839,000 children under the age of five are likely to be acutely malnourished, including nearly 143,000 likely severely malnourished. It is likely that sustained, largescale humanitarian food assistance and government support since July 2020 have mitigated the magnitude and severity of the food insecurity.
Through at least mid-2021, the desert locust will continue to pose a serious risk of damage to both pasture and crops across Somalia. Available forecasts indicate an increased likelihood of below-average rainfall during the 2021 Gu (April-June) season across most of the country, which would adversely affect food security and nutrition conditions