Stable food prices, peaking of green consumption, start of main harvest with associated labor opportunities, and ongoing safety-net programming are expected to ensure sufficient food access for most households, resulting in Minimal (IPC Phase 1) food insecurity outcomes from March to June 2015.
Food prices were generally been stable throughout 2014 on account of low import prices and a reduction in fuel prices. However, recent increases in maize prices in South Africa, increases in fuel prices, and an anticipated drop in production locally and in South Africa are likely to increase food prices from May, weakening the purchasing power of poor households.
The 2014/15 agriculture season performed well between October and mid-January, but prolonged dry spells, below-average rainfall, and a poor distribution of rainfall has hurt production prospects and agricultural income-earning opportunities during the second half of the season. With crops currently in poor to mediocre condition, continued below-average rainfall and an expected early end to the season is likely to further limit income-earning opportunities and result in above-average staple food import needs.