Thursday, August 11, 2011

AFGHANISTAN: Nearly nine million face food shortages

IRIN News, uruknet.info, Aug. 9, 2011
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KABUL, 9 August 2011 (IRIN) – Ongoing drought in northern, northeastern and western Afghanistan is likely to push 1.5-2 million more people into food insecurity this autumn, according to the UN World Food Programme (WFP).

This is in addition to the seven million country-wide already facing food shortages.

The Ministry of Agriculture, Irrigation and Livestock (MAIL) is reporting a failure of the rain-fed wheat crop, which accounts for about 55 percent of the total domestic wheat yield.

Irrigated wheat, which tends to yield more per hectare, has also been affected by the drought. The average wheat yield (without fertilizers) on irrigated land is about 2.7 tons per hectare (3.5 tons with fertilizer), versus only 1.1 tons on rain-fed land, according to MAIL.

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