| 19 April 2024, Friday |

Food Prices in Yemen at All-Time High Since 1990

The World Food Program’s (WFP) Food Security Quarterly Review on Yemen has shown that the global Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) food price index increased significantly in March 2022 to a new all-time high since 1990.


It published a report stating that fertilizer prices reached their highest level since late 2008. In addition, the global crude oil prices in March marked the highest level recorded over the past 10 years.


The pump price of petrol and diesel increased by 78 and 90%, respectively, over Q1 2022, the report showed.


The volume of food imports during Q1 2022 increased by 24% through the Houthi-held al-Hodeidah and Saleef ports compared to Q4 2021. This came ahead of the United Nations proposal for a nationwide two-month truce starting April 2.


The food imports through Aden port in Q1 2022 and Q4 2021 were comparably lower than the first three quarters of 2021, largely associated with the reduction of humanitarian food assistance in Yemen, which is mostly imported through Aden port.


The report indicated that food insecurity remained persistently high during this period.


“Half of the surveyed households during March were unable to meet their minimum food needs, indicating that the country reached the worst nationwide levels of food insecurity since 2018.”


This was driven by an escalation of conflict levels, all time high food prices, high fuel prices and a reduction in humanitarian food assistance.


In Q1 2022, 17.4 million Yemenis are facing acute food insecurity with 31,000 living in famine-like conditions.


By mid-2022, acute food insecurity is projected to increase to 19 million, with 161,000 people facing famine-like conditions.


Due to funding shortfalls, as of January 2022, WFP targeted eight million people with reduced rations in each distribution cycle, while five million people living in areas of highest concern were targeted for food assistance with full rations.


The monthly average cost of the minimum food basket increased by 25% during January-March, reaching another all-time peak of 17,168 Yemeni riyals in March 2022.


The report stressed that it is highly concerning that families are now required to pay twice as much to keep the same level of food consumption which they struggled to maintain in 2021.

  • Asharq Al-Awsat