Food Assistance Fact Sheet - Malawi

July 12, 2016

Food Security Situation

  • Malawi, which ranks 173 out of 187 countries in the 2015 UN Development Program Human Development Index, is a low-income country with 41 percent of the population living in poverty.  The 2015 Malawi Vulnerability Assessment Committee (MVAC) found that 2.8 million people are facing food insecurity in the country. This figure is likely much higher this year and will be updated based on the pending 2016 MVAC results.
  • The Government of Malawi released a disaster declaration in April 2016 due to extreme drought conditions exacerbated by El Niño. High maize prices, widespread crop failures, and reduced income generating opportunities have caused populations in several areas to face Integrated Phase Classification Crisis (IPC) 3 and Stressed IPC 2 levels of food insecurity.  Households in IPC 3 are relying on food assistance and resorting to negative coping strategies such as selling assets, stealing food, and taking their children out of school, according to the Famine Early Warning System (FEWS NET). Food consumption gaps are expected to continue as food security deteriorates through the next lean season.
Map of Malawi
CIA World Factbook

Food Assistance Projects

  • In response to severe flooding in 2015, as well as the ongoing impacts of consecutive poor harvests related to El Niño, the Office of Food for Peace (FFP) is assisting vulnerable Malawians in 25 of 28 districts through U.S. in-kind assistance and locally and regionally purchased food through the UN World Food Program (WFP). This food complements Government of Malawi-provided maize that WFP is transporting and distributing with USAID resources.
  • Through the Catholic Relief Services-led consortium, the FFP development food assistance project is assisting 248,000 food insecure households in Malawi. The project aims to reduce chronic malnutrition and food insecurity and build resilience among vulnerable populations in Chikwawa, Nsanje, and rural Blantyre -- three of the most food-insecure, chronically malnourished, and disaster-prone districts of Southern Malawi.
  • The Project Concern International-led consortium is implementing an FFP-supported project to improve food security among 63,400 vulnerable households in Balaka and Machinga districts. The project focuses on increasing market-oriented agriculture production, improving health and nutrition of pregnant and lactating women and children, and improving resilience of vulnerable households.

Food for Peace Contributions

Total Contributions:

  U.S. Dollars Metric Tons
Fiscal Year 2016 $88.1 million 42,810 MT
Fiscal Year 2015 $30.8 million 17,155 MT
Fiscal Year 2014 $8.9 million 880 MT
Fiscal Year 2013 $42.0 million 45,302 MT

Fiscal Year 2016 Contribution Breakdown:

  U.S. Dollars Metric Tons
Title II Development $6.5 million 4,450 MT
Community Development Funds (CDF) $12 million  
Title II Emergency $46.6 million 38,360 MT
Emergency Food Security Program (EFSP) $23 million  

Note: EFSP: Emergency Food Security Program
Food Security Situation information provided by FEWS NET as of July 2016.

Country Specific Guidance

Last updated: July 12, 2016

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