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Remotely Monitored Country
Special Report

Assessment of Chronic Food Insecurity in Liberia

June 2017

IPC 2.0 Acute Food Insecurity Phase

1: Minimal
2: Stressed
3: Crisis
4: Emergency
5: Famine
Would likely be at least one phase worse without current or programmed humanitarian assistance
FEWS NET classification is IPC-compatible. IPC-compatible analysis follows key IPC protocols but does not necessarily reflect the consensus of national food security partners.

IPC 2.0 Acute Food Insecurity Phase

1: Minimal
2: Stressed
3+: Crisis or higher
Would likely be at least one phase worse without
current or programmed humanitarian assistance
FEWS NET classification is IPC-compatible. IPC-compatible analysis follows key IPC protocols but does not necessarily reflect the consensus of national food security partners.
FEWS NET Remote Monitoring countries use a colored outline to represent the highest IPC classification in areas of concern.

IPC 2.0 Acute Food Insecurity Phase

Presence countries:
1: Minimal
2: Stressed
3: Crisis
4: Emergency
5: Famine
Remote monitoring
countries:
1: Minimal
2: Stressed
3+: Crisis or higher
Would likely be at least one phase worse without
current or programmed humanitarian assistance
FEWS NET Remote Monitoring countries use a colored outline to represent the highest IPC classification in areas of concern.
Partners: 
CILSS
IPC
Africare
Government of Liberia
FAO
Liberia Agribusiness Development Activity (LADA)
Samaritan's Purse
UNICEF
USAID
Welt hunger hlife
WFP
ZOA

Background

In early December 2016, FEWS NET, the Permanent Interstate Committee for Drought Control in the Sahel (CILSS), and the Integrated Phase Classification Global Support Unit (IPC GSU) convened stakeholders from a variety of Liberian ministries, international and local non-governmental organizations (NGOs), and United Nation (UN) agencies to pilot a chronic food insecurity analysis using IPC tools. The objective of this exercise was to both understand the dynamics of chronic food insecurity in Liberia and to inform future chronic analysis within the larger region. Using a range of data on the quantity and quality of food consumption, levels of malnutrition, and a variety of contributing factors, participants classified the severity of chronic food insecurity for each of the country’s 15 counties, estimated the size of the chronically food insecure populations, and highlighted the key limiting and underlying factors. Figure 1 presents the final conclusions of this analysis.

Summary of Classification Conclusions

The IPC-Chronic Classification consists of four levels of chronic food insecurity (CFI) severity, specifically: Minimal CFI (Level 1), Mild CFI (Level 2), Moderate CFI (Level 3), and Severe CFI (Level 4). Analysis considers three food security domains: food consumption (quality), food consumption (quantity) and chronic malnutrition. Based on an analysis of these domains, with data disaggregated for Liberia’s 15 counties, the entire country was classified as Moderate CFI (Level 3). Overall, 32 percent of Liberia’s 4.2 million people were classified as Moderate or Severe CFI. The estimated prevalence of Moderate and Severe CFI was highest in the South Eastern regions (Grand Gedeh, Rivercess, Sinoe, Grand Kru, Maryland, and River Gee) where it ranged between 40 and 45 percent, compared to 30 to 35 percent in other rural parts of the country. The prevalence of moderate and severe CFI was lowest in greater Monrovia. Liberian households, which face moderate and severe chronic food insecurity experience seasonal food deficits for two to four months per year and have poor dietary diversity. Cassava, rice, and vegetables are widely grown and serve as primary livelihoods, but low yields and the extremely poor state of the country’s road network constrain farmer incomes, market access, and contribute to high food prices in rural areas. Many households are likely to have moderately stunted children and very limited resilience to shocks, such as the Ebola epidemic that occurred in 2014–2015.


Chronic food insecurity classification for Liberia

Source: December 2016 Chronic Food Insecurity Analysis Workshop

About FEWS NET

The Famine Early Warning Systems Network is a leading provider of early warning and analysis on food insecurity. Created by USAID in 1985 to help decision-makers plan for humanitarian crises, FEWS NET provides evidence-based analysis on some 34 countries. Implementing team members include NASA, NOAA, USDA, and USGS, along with Chemonics International Inc. and Kimetrica. Read more about our work.

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