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ACAPS Briefing Note: Somalia - Food Insecurity (16 November 2021)

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Food insecurity has been a persistent issue in Somalia since 1991 (The Conversation 29/04/2021). In 2021, the number of people experiencing food insecurity in the country has increased, and this trend is anticipated to continue (FEWS NET 16/03/2021 and 31/08/2021). In the absence of humanitarian assistance, close to 3.5 million people (nearly 22% of the population) are projected to experience Crisis (IPC Phase 3) food insecurity or higher levels in October–December, up from 2.2 million in July–September (FEWS NET 31/08/2021). The projection represents a 67% increase in the number of people facing severe food insecurity compared to the same period in 2020 (FAO 13/10/2021). A number of drivers, including drought, conflict, flooding, and locust infestations, contribute to limited food availability and accessibility (OCHA 09/03/2021; FAO and SWALIM 26/08/2021; REACH 20/09/2021). Food prices are rising. Compared to the five-year average for September, local cereal prices increased by 10–54% in most regions in the same month in 2021 given limited cereal supplies (FSNAU 19/10/2021). Persistent food insecurity has reduced people’s resilience and weakened their coping capacity, potentially forcing them to use harmful coping mechanisms that add to protection concerns (WBG 01/04/2021).