Per capita’ cereal production in Mozambique has remained below what is necessary to ensure food security, in contrast to cassava and sweet potato production, which is around three times higher, according to the latest statistics.
The data are part of a new publication, Basic Indicators of Agriculture and Food 2015-2019, launched on Monday by the Mozambican Institute of Statistics (INE).
Per capita, cereal production remained below food security levels, at 71 kilograms per inhabitant in 2015 and 94.3 in 2019. For cassava and sweet potatoes, the situation was better with per capita production of 267 kilos in 2015 and 336 kilos in 2019.
At the level of cash crops, the data show stability in the reference period, a fact observed in cashew seedlings produced, around 4.5 million in 2019.
Between 2015 and 2019, livestock products showed low per capita figures: chicken meat production was 3.8 kilos per capita in 2019, up from 2.5 kilos in 2015.
In beef production, Maputo province stood out, with almost half of the country’s production: 7,266 tonnes in 2019. Manica and Sofala excelled in cow milk production as they accounted for 41.3% and 25.1% of the total in 2019, respectively.
Per capita, fish production fell to 11.6 kg in 2019, after 13.7 kg in 2018 and 12.4 kg in 2017, with sea fishing accounting for 59.5% of all the sector’s production.
Credit granted to the agricultural sector remained insignificant compared to the rest of the economy, at 3.65% in 2015 and 3.71% in 2019.
The figure contrasts with the weight of the agricultural sector in GDP, which stabilised at around 23% between 2015 and 2019, while the state budget funds allocated to the sector remained below 10% throughout the five-year period, having been set at 4.9% in 2019.
Regarding acute food insecurity, it stood at 29.9% of families in 2019 (for a total population of 29.3 million), while in the same year acute malnutrition affected 12.3% of children, INE data said.
The UN World Food Programme (WFP) also follows these indicators and estimated that acute malnutrition affects almost half of children under 5 years of age.
It also estimated that over 1.6 million people face acute food insecurity.