Estimates by the Ministry of Agriculture, Irrigation and Water Development indicate that 2013/14 maize production is approximately 9 percent higher than the previous season and 12 percent higher than the five-year average. Overall, a 1.5 million MT surplus in maize is expected with some increases ranging from 7 to 10 percent among other food crop production.
The average national maize price decreased in June, according to seasonal trends, but continues to be 60 percent above the five-year average. Prices are expected to rise over between July and December, but they will be lower than those recorded during the same period last year.
Extended periods of dryness, poor rainfall distribution, and an early cessation of rainfall affected localized production in parts of the Middle Shire and Central Karonga livelihood zone. Currently poor households in Karonga, Balaka, Neno, and Mwanza district are Stressed (IPC Phase 2) and outcomes are expected to deteriorate to Crisis (IPC Phase 3) between August and December.