Food Assistance Fact Sheet - South Sudan

December 21, 2015

Food Security Situation

Map of South Sudan
CIA World Factbook
  • A year and a half after South Sudan officially declared its independence from Sudan, violence erupted in December 2013 which resulted in a major civil conflict that has led to tens of thousands of deaths, a major economic crisis, massive displacement, and made South Sudan one of the most food insecure countries in the world. 

  • While the peace agreement signed in August 2015 is the best hope for peace in South Sudan, a major humanitarian crisis remains. Multiple years of conflict have eliminated livelihoods, decimated the economy, and destroyed families’ ability to cope, leaving an estimated 2.4 million people acutely food insecure – 60 percent more than this time last year.  Of the nearly 2.5 million people who have fled their homes, 183,000 are seeking protection at UN peacekeeping compounds.  These numbers will only increase in early 2016 as the limited October harvest runs out.  Of extreme concern are the estimated 40,000 people in Unity State experiencing catastrophic food insecurity.  

  • While a robust humanitarian response has helped avert a famine for two consecutive years, without urgent and immediate access to populations in need, there remains a concrete risk of localized famine in 2016. 

  • The worst food insecurity is located in the most conflict-affected areas of Jonglei, Unity, and Upper Nile but a 150 percent increase above the average of nationwide food prices, combined with disrupted markets and trade, is also spurring a spike in food insecurity in the greater Bahr el Ghazal and Equatoria regions. 

Food Assistance Programs


  • The Office of Food for Peace (FFP) is the largest supporter of the U.N. World Food Program (WFP) in South Sudan, reaching an estimated 1.3 million people each month with lifesaving emergency food assistance. 

  • Since the crisis began in December 2013, FFP has provided more than $720 million for WFP’s emergency and relief operations, including drawing down a seldom-tapped reserve under the Secretary of Agriculture, the Bill Emerson Humanitarian Trust (BEHT). In FY 2015, FFP has also contributed $5.6 million to UNICEF and $280,000 to Action Against Hunger for on-going treatment of severe acute malnutrition in children under the age of five, and $55.1 million to Catholic Relief Services (CRS) for continued lifesaving emergency food distributions and early recovery food production activities in Jonglei State.  

Food for Peace Contributions

Total Contributions:

  U.S. Dollars Metric Tons
Fiscal Year 2016 $190.0 million 94,250 MT
Fiscal Year 2015 $320.9 million 130,770 MT
Fiscal Year 2014 $295.7 million 119,040 MT
Fiscal Year 2013 $166.0 million 95,274 MT
Fiscal Year 2012 $205.5 million 110,499 MT

Fiscal Year 2016 Contribution Breakdown:

  U.S. Dollars Metric Tons
Title II Development ---- ----
Title II Emergency $190.0 million 94,250 MT
Bill Emerson Humanitarian Trust (BEHT)    
Emergency Food Security Program (EFSP) ---- ----
Food Security Situation information provided by FEWS NET, WFP, UNHCR, and the Integrated Food Security Phase Classification as of November 2015.

Country Specific Guidance

Last updated: December 21, 2015

Share This Page