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As part of WFP preparation for the protracted relief and recovery operation “Food Assistance for Conflict-Affected Populations in Nepal”, starting in July 2007, a synthesis of findings from various assessment and information from WFP’s Food Security Monitoring and Analysis System took place to guide the planned relief and recovery operation.
Food insecurity in Nepal is pervasive and widespread. A recent joint FAO/WFP Crop and Food Assessment Mission conducted in April 2007 concluded that malnutrition rates are at crisis level and that Nepal’s food security situation is at a crossroads. Poverty levels are high, the success of the peace process uncertain, agricultural growth remains limited, and there are indications of climatic change resulting in more erratic weather conditions with drought spells in parts of the country combined with excessive rainfall in other areas. The mission concluded that the food security situation in Nepal remains precarious and advocates for an immediate support programme to urgently address the huge problem of acute food insecurity and unacceptable high malnutrition rates. The mission argues that persistent high levels of food insecurity may destabilize the peace process and that an immediate effort needs to be set in place to improve household food security and the livelihoods of the rural poor.