Southern Africa may face food deficits due to armyworm and poor rains - FRA
Southern Africa, which recorded bumper crop harvests last season, could face food deficits following prolonged dry spells and the march of the fall army worm, a senior Food and Agriculture Organisation (FAO) official has said.
The Eastern Cape department of rural development and agrarian reform confirmed the presence of fall armyworm in the province.
"The tell-tale signs are not good for this cropping season with the combination of delayed rains and outbreaks of the fall armyworm," David Phiri, FAO’s sub-regional co-ordinator for Southern Africa, said in a phone interview. "The biggest problem this year is less, overall, the fall armyworm than it is the sporadic rainfall patterns that are emerging. A combination makes the situation worse."