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Country analysis

Lesotho


Between October 2022 and March 2023, around 320,000 people (22% of the population in rural areas) are projected to face acute food insecurity in Lesotho. This projection is a 40% increase compared with the 229,000 people who faced acute food insecurity between July–September 2022. Berea, Mafeteng, Maseru, Mohales hoek, Mokhotlong, Qachas nek, Quthing, and Thaba tseka districts are projected to face Crisis (IPC Phase 3) food insecurity levels during this period.

Above-average rainfall during the October 2022 to March 2023 rainy season has disrupted some farming activities and is projected to reduce crop production. The high costs of seeds and fertiliser have also deterred planting activities for some farmers. As a result, farmland use has fallen 30% below average, which could also contribute to lower crop production.

Economic challenges, such as a high inflation rate and reduced income-generating opportunities, also contribute to food insecurity. The food inflation rate rose steadily in 2022, from 7.4% in January to 10.3% in December. Disruptions in global supply chains given the war in Ukraine have also contributed to the high prices of food, fuel, and fertiliser in the country. The residual impact of the COVID-19 pandemic has reduced employment opportunities, both within the country and in neighbouring South Africa, where many migrants from Lesotho travel to for seasonal jobs.

(IPC 19/08/2022, FEWS NET 01/03/2023, IPC 19/08/2022, Trading Economics accessed 10/03/2023, World Bank 06/10/2022)

Between October 2022 and March 2023, around 320,000 people (22% of the population in rural areas) are projected to face acute food insecurity in Lesotho. This projection is a 40% increase compared with the 229,000 people who faced acute food insecurity between July–September 2022. Berea, Mafeteng, Maseru, Mohales hoek, Mokhotlong, Qachas nek, Quthing, and Thaba tseka districts are projected to face Crisis (IPC Phase 3) food insecurity levels during this period.

Above-average rainfall during the October 2022 to March 2023 rainy season has disrupted some farming activities and is projected to reduce crop production. The high costs of seeds and fertiliser have also deterred planting activities for some farmers. As a result, farmland use has fallen 30% below average, which could also contribute to lower crop production.

Economic challenges, such as a high inflation rate and reduced income-generating opportunities, also contribute to food insecurity. The food inflation rate rose steadily in 2022, from 7.4% in January to 10.3% in December. Disruptions in global supply chains given the war in Ukraine have also contributed to the high prices of food, fuel, and fertiliser in the country. The residual impact of the COVID-19 pandemic has reduced employment opportunities, both within the country and in neighbouring South Africa, where many migrants from Lesotho travel to for seasonal jobs.

(IPC 19/08/2022, FEWS NET 01/03/2023, IPC 19/08/2022, Trading Economics accessed 10/03/2023, World Bank 06/10/2022)

current crises
in Lesotho


These crises have been identified through the INFORM Severity Index, a tool for measuring and comparing the severity of humanitarian crises globally.

Read more about the Index

REG012 - Southern Africa Regional Food Security Crisis

Last updated 30/04/2024


Drivers


Crisis level

Regional

Severity level

3.9 High

Access constraints

4.0