The United States’ is donating $15.7 million worth of food commodities to Malawi to assist a portion of the 2.8 million people in need of humanitarian food assistance. U.S. Ambassador to Malawi Virginia Palmer made the announcement in late September.
This assistance is in response to the Government of Malawi’s September 21 appeal for donor support, following the Vulnerability Assessment Committee findings in July 2015.
As a result of the unfavorable 2014/2015 farming season, 2.8 million Malawians in 24 districts will require food assistance from October 2015 to March 2016. The late onset of rains, severe flooding, mid-season dry spells, and the early ending of rains contributed to an approximately 30 percent reduction in Malawi’s maize crop.
The UN World Food Program will receive and distribute the United States’ food donation of 6,250 metric tons of beans and 2,810 metric tons of vitamin A & D fortified vegetable oil as part of a larger food basket designed to meet the nutritional requirements of those in need. The food donation will arrive in Malawi beginning in October 2015.
Since 2012, the United States, through the U.S. Agency for International Development, or USAID, has provided over $55 million, worth of food assistance to address food insecurity stemming from recurrent adverse weather in Malawi. In August 2014, the United States provided $7 million, through WFP to support the MVAC response to the seasonal food insecurity that affected 640,000 people in 19 districts across Malawi.
Early this year, the United States provided further assistance totaling $9.3 million to Malawi when the country experienced widespread, devastating floods. Beyond our humanitarian assistance, the United States provides approximately $25 million per year under President Obama’s Feed the Future and Climate Change Initiatives that are building resilience among vulnerable households in Central and Southern Malawi.
U.S. Ambassador to Malawi Virginia Palmer stressed that it is important to tackle agriculture shortfalls holistically.
"The United States,” she said, “is committed to Malawi's welfare and development, and we are proud to partner with the people of Malawi in this time of need."