CAMBODIA FOOD SECURITy AND NUTRITION Meanchey, Preah Vihear and Stung Treng (Map 2); impact reports from other flood affected provinces (e.g. Battambang, Pursat

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  • The Cambodia Food Security and Nutrition Quarterly Bulletin aims to provide decision makers with a regular overview of trends and emerging threats relating to food and nutrition security in Cambodia. It is a collaborative effort between the Council for Agricultural and Rural Development (CARD), the Ministry of Agriculture, Forestry and Fisheries (MAFF), the Ministry of Water Resource and Meteorology (MoWRAM), the Ministry of Health (MoH), the National Committee for Disaster Management (NCDM) and the National Institute of Statistics (NIS), with technical and financial support from the United Nations World Food Programme, UNICEF, the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations, and the World Health Organization.

    To receive copies of this Bulletin, please contact: Secretariat of the Technical Working Group for Food Security and Nutrition, Council for Agricultural and Rural Development (Tel: +855 23 428 464, email: foodsecurity@ online.com.kh , website: http://www.foodsecurity.gov.kh/)

    CAMBODIA FOOD SECURITy AND NUTRITIONQUARTERly BUllETIN

    ISSUE #12 | July September 2013

    HIGHLIGHTS Flooding in September affected 377,354 households and 139,000 ha of agricultural land (The impact reports of rice cultivation from Battambang, Pursat, Pailin were not available at the time of publication of this bulletin). The cultivated area of wet season rice in September was 6.7% higher than the corresponding month in 2012. Cultivated areas of maize and cassava increased by 3% and 15%, respectively, while, mung bean decreased by 5%. In September 2013, wholesale rice prices decreased by 2.9% month-on-month; however, prices are expected to increase in the next quarter (especially in October and November) due to an increase in demand for rice during the lean season. Purchasing power of vulnerable households increased in September 2013 due to an increase in the average unskilled wage rate and a decrease in the average retail price of rice. The number of acute diarrhoea cases reported in the third quarter of 2013 was lower than that in the first and second quarter of 2013, and also lower than the threshold for an outbreak warning despite widespread flooding.

    Environmental Conditions and DisastersCambodia experienced extensive rainfall during the early wet season of 2013, which enabled timely planting of the wet season rice crop. However, heavy rains in September upstream of the Mekong Basin and in Cambodia caused flash floods and river flooding, affecting 20 provinces. Flooding has caused 168 deaths, affected 377,354 households and 139,000 hectares of wet season rice cultivated areas (of which 5,700 hectares were destroyed; and the impact reports from Battambang, Pursat, Pailin were not available at the time of publication of this bulletin), as well as other infrastructures.

    Food ProductionWet season rice cultivation in september 2013 was 2.5 million hectares, 6.7% higher than the same period in 2012. The subsidiary and industrial crop cultivation slightly changed. The cultivated areas of mung bean decreased by 5%, while the cultivated area of maize and cassava increased by 3% and 15% respectively.

    Food PricesThe overall inflation rate was 3.8% in September 2013. Food prices increased by 1.2% on a month-on-month basis and by 5.3% year-on-year, while gasoline prices decreased by 1.6% on a month-on-month basis. In September 2013, wholesale rice prices decreased by 2.9% month-on-month and by 8% year-on-year, but are expected to increase in October and November. In September 2013, the terms of trade for unskilled labor and mixed rice was 9.2, an increase of 6% on a month-on-month basis due to an increase in the average unskilled wage rate and a decrease in the average retail price of rice, indicating an improvement in household food purchasing power.

    Health and NutritionIn the third quarter of 2013, there was no significant change in diarrhoea cases reported despite severe floods occurring in September. According to the Cambodia Early Warning System (CAMEWARN), all reported cases are below the threshold for an outbreak warning and are lower than the number of cases reported in the first and second quarter.

    Environmental Conditions and Disasters..........2Rainfall River water levels Disasters

    Food Production............3Rice cultivation Subsidiary and industrial crop cultivation

    Food Prices..........................................................4International and regional food and rice prices Local consumer price index and food price index Local wholesale food commodity prices Price monitoring and forecasting Food purchasing power of vulnerable households

    Health and Nutrition................................6Diarrhoea and early warning system data

    Content

  • To receive copies of this Bulletin, contact: Secretariat of the Technical Working Group for Food Security and NutritionTel: +855 23 428 464, email: foodsecurity@ online.com.kh, website: http://www.foodsecurity.gov.kh/ Page 2

    CAMBODIA FOOD SECURITy AND NUTRITION QUARTERly BUllETIN ISSUE #12 | July - September 2013

    ENVIRONMENTAl CONDITIONS AND DISASTERS

    RainfallFigure 1 shows the rainfall level by month in 2013 compared to 2012 and the historical average (2000-2012). From June to September 2013, Cambodia experienced higher rainfall than the historical average. In the third quarter (July-September) of 2013, the average rainfall level was 286.4 mm, 10% higher than the historical average but 2% lower than the same period in 2012. Table 1 shows rainfall levels in 2012, 2013 and historical average in four selected provinces1 representing the main agro-ecological zones.

    Figure 1: Rainfall levels in Cambodia

    Source: Ministry of Water Resources and Meteorology

    Table 1: Rainfall in four selected provinces in Cambodia

    Source: Ministry of Water Resources and Meteorology

    Map 1 shows the recorded rainfall pattern in the third quarter (July-September) in 2013. Provinces in the coastal areas (Koh Kong and

    1 Kampot is in the Coastal zone, Prey Veng in the Plains zone, Banteay Meanchey in the Tonle Sap zone, and Kratie in the Plateau/Mountain zone

    This bulletin presents primary and secondary analysis of government administrative data and national sample surveys.

    Preah Sihanouk) and the Northeast (Stung Treng, Preah Vihear and Kratie) experienced relatively high average rainfall levels.

    Map 1: Average rainfall pattern, July-September 2013

    Source: Ministry of Water Resources and Meteorology

    River Water levelsFigures 2 and 3 present the river water levels in two monitoring stations (Kampong Cham on the Mekong River and Prek Kdam on the Tonle Sap River).

    In the third quarter (July-September) of 2013, the Mekong River water level changed significantly. From mid-July to mid-August, the water level was higher than the historical average (1980-2012) in the same period, but was lower than the historical average from late August to mid-September of 2013. However, in late September, the water level in the Mekong surpassed alarm-levels and nearly reached flood-levels due to heavy rainfall upstream in the Mekong Basin. The highest Mekong water level measured at Kampong Cham monitoring station was recorded on 28 of September at 15.97 meters, 0.77 meters higher than the alarm-level.

    In this quarter, the Tonle Sap River water level continuously rose and nearly reached alarm-levels by early October. The highest river water level measured at Prek Kdam monitoring station was recorded on 10 of October at 9.39 meters, 0.11 meters lower than the alarm-level but 0.94 meters higher than the historical average (1980-2012).

    Figure 2: Water level at the Kampong Cham monitoring station

    Source: Ministry of Water Resources and Meteorology

  • To receive copies of this Bulletin, contact: Secretariat of the Technical Working Group for Food Security and NutritionTel: +855 23 428 464, email: foodsecurity@ online.com.kh, website: http://www.foodsecurity.gov.kh/ Page 3

    CAMBODIA FOOD SECURITy AND NUTRITION QUARTERly BUllETIN ISSUE #12 | July - September 2013

    Figure 3: Water level at the Prek Kdam monitoring station

    Source: Ministry of Water Resources and Meteorology

    DisastersHeavy rainfall in September upstream in the Mekong Basin and in Cambodia led to flash floods and river floods which affected 20 provinces along the Mekong River, Tonles Sap Lake and parts of Northwest of the country. According to the latest data (18 October 2013) from the National Committee for Disaster Management (NCDM) , 168 persons have been killed, 29 persons injured, 377,354 households were affected, of which 31,314 households were evacuated. Flooding also affected infrastucture including: 231,484 houses (of which 287 were destroyed); 1,242 schools; 533 pagodas; 78 health centers; 440 kilometers of national and provincial road; 3,693 kilometers of rural roads; 183 bridges; and 114 dams. Detailed data on floods impact by province is presented in table 2.

    Table 2: Impact of floods by province

    Source: National Committee for Disaster Management

    FOOD PRODUCTION

    Rice CultivationFigure 4 shows the total wet season rice cultivated area by month. At the end of September 2013, the total cultivated area was 2.5 million hectares, 6.7% higher than the corresponding period in 2012 and was 105% of the planned figure.

    Figure 4: Wet season rice cultivated areas

    Source: Ministry of Agriculture, Forestry and Fisheries

    Table 3 below shows the wet season rice cultivated area for selected provinces at the end of September 2013 compared to corresponding period in 2012 and the total planned area in 2013. In September 2013, total wet season rice cultivated area in Kampong Thom, Prey Veng, and Takeo increased year-on-year by 7%, 13% and 11%, respectively, while the cultivated area in Banteay Meanchey decreased by 2%. Nevertheless, the total cultivated area in September 2013 was above the planned figure nationwide.

    Table 3: Wet season rice cultivated areas, by province

    Source: Ministry of Agriculture, Forestry and Fisheries

    Figure 5 below presents the total cultivated area of various rice varieties in Cambodia. As of September 2013, the cultivated area of medium rice and late rice were 10% and 8% higher respectively than the corresponding month in 2012. However, the cultivated area of floating rice in September 2013 was 4% lower than that in September 2012 due to peaple did not expect floods.

    Figure 5: Rice cultivated area, by type

    Source: Ministry of Agriculture, Forestry and Fisheries

  • To receive copies of this Bulletin, contact: Secretariat of the Technical Working Group for Food Security and NutritionTel: +855 23 428 464, email: foodsecurity@ online.com.kh, website: http://www.foodsecurity.gov.kh/ Page 4

    CAMBODIA FOOD SECURITy AND NUTRITION QUARTERly BUllETIN ISSUE #12 | July - September 2013

    Flooding in September affected wet season rice cultivation in 2013. According to MAFF data reportedly on 02 October 2013, floods affected about 139,000 hectares of rice cultivated areas (5,700 hectares of which were destroyed), equivalent to 6% of total cultivated areas in September 2013. The most affected provinces were Banteay Meanchey, Kampong Cham, Prey Veng, Siem Reap, Otdar Meanchey, Preah Vihear and Stung Treng (Map 2); impact reports from other flood affected provinces (e.g. Battambang, Pursat and Pailin) were not yet available at the time of publication of this bulletin. MAFF continues to monitor and evaluate rice damage in all affected provinces, with higher figures expected as data becomes available.

    Figure 6: Rice cultivated areas affected & destroyed by disasters

    Source: Ministry of Agriculture, Forestry and Fisheries

    Map 2: Rice cultivated areas affected by floods

    Source: Ministry of Agriculture, Forestry and Fisheries

    Subsidiary and Industrial Crop CultivationFigure 7 below compares the cultivated areas of key subsidiary and industrial crops (maize, cassava and mung bean) between September 2013 and the previous year.

    In September 2013, the cultivated area for mung bean was 44,000 hectares, 5% lower than that in September 2012. The cultivated areas for cassava (167,000 hectares) and maize (387,000 hectares) were higher this year than the previous year by 3% and 15% respectively. In September 2013, the cultivated areas for cassava in all provinces, except Svay Rieng and Pailin, were higher than the same month in 2012 (Figure 8).

    Figure 7: Cultivated area of key subsidiary and industrial crop

    Source: Ministry of Agriculture, Forestry and Fisheries

    Figure 8: Cultivated area for cassava, by province

    Source: Ministry of Agriculture, Forestry and Fisheries

    FOOD PRICES

    International and Regional Food and Rice PricesThe FAO Food Price Index2, measures the international price level of a basket of key food commodities. In September 2013, the food price index averaged 199.1 points, 1.3% lower than the previous month (Figure 9). The International Rice Price Index was 224 points, a decrease of 4.3% on a month-on-month basis in September 2013.

    Figure 9: FAO Food and Rice Price Indices (100 = 2002-2004)

    Source: FAO, http://www.fao.org/worldfoodsituation/FoodPricesIndex/en/

    2 The FAO Food Price Index consists of the average of commodity group price indices (i.e. meat, dairy, cereals, oils/fats, and sugar) weighted with the average export shares of each of the groups for 2002-2004.

  • To receive copies of this Bulletin, contact: Secretariat of the Technical Working Group for Food Security and NutritionTel: +855 23 428 464, email: foodsecurity@ online.com.kh, website: http://www.foodsecurity.gov.kh/ Page 5

    CAMBODIA FOOD SECURITy AND NUTRITION QUARTERly BUllETIN ISSUE #12 | July - September 2013

    The price of Thai A1 Super white rice (100% broken) and Vietnamese white rice (25% broken) are the two benchmark prices for Asia. In September 2013, the f.o.b. prices3 of Thai A1 Super white rice and Vietnamese white rice were 406 USD/mt and 340 USD/mt, respectively (Figure 10). Thai A1 Super white rice prices decreased by 14% month-on-month, while the price of Vietnamese white rice also decreased by 6% month-on-month.

    Figure 10: Wholesale price of Thai, Vietnamese and Cambodian white rice

    Source: FAO, http://www.fao.org/es/esc/prices/PricesServlet.jsp?lang=en

    local Consumer Price Index and Food Price IndexThe general Consumer Price Index (CPI)4 measures the cost of a consumption basket composed of 259 items. Each item is weighted based on its importance in an average households expenditure5. In September 2013, the general CPI averaged 154.9 points, a decrease of 0.7% on a month-on-month basis and the inflation rate was 3.8%.

    The Food Price Index (FPI) measures the cost of the food items in the general CPI consumption basket in which food items make up 43.2% of the total consumption basket. In September 2013, food prices increased by 1.2% on a month-on-month basis and by 5.3% on a year-on-year basis (Figure 11). Gasoline prices in September 2013 decreased by 1.6% month-on-month.

    Figure 11: Relative change in general consumer prices, food prices and non-food prices (base = Oct-Dec 2006)

    Source: National Institute of Statistics

    3 Free on board (f.o.b.) price includes all charges up to the placing of goods on board a ship at the port of departure specified by the buyer.4 The CPI is collected and reported by the National Institute of Statistics (NIS). 5 Relative item expenditure weights are derived from the 2004 Cambodia Socio-Economic Survey and adjusted to October-December 2006 price levels.

    local Wholesale Food Commodity PricesPrice reports from the Agricultural Marketing Office of the Ministry of Agriculture, Forestry and Fisheries (AMO MAFF) show that mixed rice6 wholesale prices in the third quarter of 2013 decreased for three consecutive months. In September, the price was 1,716 riel/kg, a decrease of 2.9% on a month-on-month basis and 8% on a year-on-year basis (Figure 12).

    Figure 12: Wholesale price of mixed rice7

    Source: Cambodia Agricultural Market Information Service, MAFF

    Price Monitoring and Forecasting FAOs price monitoring tool compares recent actual wholesale prices from AMO MAFF with normal price levels. The normal price level takes into account historical price levels and adjusts for inflation and seasonal factors. A discrepancy between current actual prices and normal prices indicates that current prices are higher/lower than what would be expected. In September 2013, the actual wholesale price of mixed rice was 11% lower than the expected normal price, which indicates that price levels were below historically normal levels.

    Prices for the upcoming quarter (October to December) were projected by the price monitoring tool using the September 2013 price, current inflation rate, and seasonal factors. Rice prices are expected to increase in October and November due to the depletion of household rice stocks and an increase in demand of rice during the lean season; however rice prices are likely to decrease in December due to the main wet season harvest (Figure 13).

    Figure 13: Normal and projected prices of wholesale rice

    Source: AMO, WFP, FAO

    6 Mixed rice is considered a low-quality type of rice. 7 Wholesale rice prices are collected from urban markets or rice mills in Kampong Chhnang, Kampong Cham, Takeo, Siem Reap, Prey Veng, Phnom Penh, Kampot, Battambang, Banteay Meanchey.

  • To receive copies of this Bulletin, contact: Secretariat of the Technical Working Group for Food Security and NutritionTel: +855 23 428 464, email: foodsecurity@ online.com.kh, website: http://www.foodsecurity.gov.kh/ Page 6

    CAMBODIA FOOD SECURITy AND NUTRITION QUARTERly BUllETIN ISSUE #12 | July - September 2013

    Food Purchasing Power of Vulnerable HouseholdsThe daily wages of unskilled workers engaged in rice and non-rice farming and construction work are monitored on a monthly basis by MAFF staff8. In this quarter the unskilled wage rate increased for three consecutive months (Table 4). In September 2013, the average daily unskilled wage rate was 17,591 Riel/day, 3.2% higher than August.

    Terms of trade (ToT) is used to assess the food purchasing power of households. It is a ratio of the average daily wage rates of unskilled laborers and the average retail price of mixed rice in the market. This gives an indication of the amount of rice that an unskilled wage labourer can purchase with a daily wage.

    During the third quarter of 2013, the ToT for unskilled labor and mixed rice increased for three consecutive months. In September, the ToT was 9.2, an increase of 6% month-on-month. The increase in the ToT was due to an increase in unskilled wage rates and a decrease in rice prices resulting in an improvement of household food purchasing power.

    Table 4: Terms of trade of unskilled labour and mixed rice

    Source: Cambodia Agricultural Market Information Service, MAFF

    HEAlTH AND NUTRITION

    Diarrhoea and early warning system dataChildren affected by diarrhoea and dysentery are at greater risk of becoming malnourished. According to the Ministry of Health Cambodia Early Warning System (CAMEWARN)9, two types of emergencies regarding acute diarrhoea exist: cholera (acute watery diarrhoea) and shigella dysentery (acute bloody diarrhoea). Both are transmitted by contaminated water, unsafe food, dirty hands and vomit or stool of sick people. Acute watery diarrhoea is one of the main causes for morbidity or mortality among the most young as well as elderly. Other causes of diarrhoea may produce severe illness for the patient, but will not produce outbreaks which represent an immediate threat to the community.

    In the third quarter of 2013, all reported cases remained stable and are below the threshold10 for an outbreak warning. Furthermore, the number of acute diarrhoea cases in the third quarter are lower than the number of cases reported in the first and second quarter of 2013 despite of widespread flooding in September.

    8 MAFF, with technical and financial support for the United Nations World Food Programme, has started collecting unskilled wage in six provinces: Battambang, Kampong Cham, Kampong Thom, Prey Veng, Pursat and Siem Reap in September 2011 and has been expanded to 14 provinces: Battambang, Kampong Cham, Kampong Thom, Prey Veng, Pursat, Siem Reap, Kampong Chhnang, Kampong Speu, Kandal, Takeo, Svay Rieng, Banteay Meanchey, Otdar Meanchey and Stung Treng.9 Health Information System for Early Warning and Response10 The term epidemic threshold refers to the level of disease which an urgent response is required. The threshold is specific to each disease and depends on the infectiousness, other determinants of transmission and local endemicity levels.

    Figure 14: Acute diarrhoea reported in the second quarter 2013 compared to the threshold for an outbreak warning, by week

    Source: Communicable Diseases Control Department, Ministry of Health

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