- What We Do
- Global Goals
- Agriculture and Food Security
- Democracy, Human Rights and Governance
- Economic Growth and Trade
- Ending Extreme Poverty
- Environment and Global Climate Change
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- Water and Sanitation
- Working in Crises and Conflict
- U.S. Global Development Lab
March 17, 2016
Food Security Situation
Kenya boasts the largest and most dynamic economy in East Africa. However, 45 percent of Kenyans still live below the poverty line. Many of Kenya’s poorest are small-scale farmers, who are reliant on rain and who do not have machinery or pesticides, making them vulnerable to shocks such as droughts and floods.
Above-average rainfall during September to December 2015, influenced by the ongoing El Niño, has led to increased harvests. Following an above-average harvest from May to June 2015, the overall food security situation has improved significantly. According to the Kenya Food Security Steering Group’s (KFSSG) February 2016 assessment, the number of food insecure requiring immediate humanitarian assistance has declined from 1 million to approximately 640,000 in the past six months.
The short rains in late 2015 improved pastures and livestock conditions in northern pastoral areas, allowing some households to move into Minimal (IPC Phase 1) food insecurity. Yet many pastoralist households will remain Stressed (IPC Phase 2) because of low livestock holdings from previous seasons and as pasture and water resources deteriorate seasonally and, in some areas, more quickly from hotter than normal land surface temperatures.
Kenya hosts over 595,000 refugees, most of whom are from Somalia. Since the outbreak of conflict in South Sudan in mid-December 2013, more than 51,000 additional South Sudanese refugees also have entered Kenya, bringing the total to almost 97,000 South Sudanese seeking safety in Kenya.
Food Assistance Programs
The Office of Food for Peace (FFP) partners with the U.N. World Food Program (WFP) to provide relief and build resilience among the most vulnerable populations in Kenya. In the arid and semi-arid lands (ASALs), FFP supports food-insecure Kenyans by providing cash or food in exchange for work on improving community infrastructure, such as rehabilitating local roads or irrigation systems. FFP is also providing funding and in-kind Ready-to-Use Therapeutic Foods to UNICEF for the treatment of severe malnutrition in the ASALs and among refugee populations in Kenya. FFP also provides support through direct food distributions, but this form of assistance is decreasing and being shifted toward food-for-assets and cash-for-assets activities.
FFP supports refugees living in the Dadaab and Kakuma camps, and their host communities, through direct food distributions, mother and child health and nutrition, and supplementary and therapeutic nutritious foods.
Food for Peace Contributions
|U.S. Dollars||Metric Tons|
|Fiscal Year 2016||$42.5 million||42,210 MT|
|Fiscal Year 2015||$83.0 million||74,331 MT|
|Fiscal Year 2014||$111.4 million||74,780 MT|
|Fiscal Year 2013||$106.7 million||86,480 MT|
|Fiscal Year 2012||$113.7 million||91,272 MT|
Fiscal Year 2016 Contribution Breakdown:
|U.S. Dollars||Metric Tons|
|Title II Development||----||----|
|Title II Emergency||$42.5 million||42,210 MT|
|Emergency Food Security Program (EFSP)||----||----|
Food Security Situation information is provided by FEWS NET and Refugee Information by UNHCR as of February 2016.
Last updated: March 18, 2016