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Kenya: Food Supply

Volume 497: debated on Monday 12 October 2009

To ask the Secretary of State for International Development what recent assessment his Department has made of food shortages in Kenya; and if he will make a statement. (291656)

The Department for International Development (DFID) accepts the United Nations (UN) agencies and the Government of Kenya’s recent assessment of the current food shortages in Kenya. This shows that domestic production of the staple, maize, is 30 per cent. less than normal due to the drought this year. Even with additional imports of food by the private sector, 9.9 million people face food insecurity.

DFID has already provided £7.9 million this year to support general food relief through the World Food Programme, and targeted relief for acutely malnourished children through international non-governmental agencies. On 2 October we announced an additional £5 million allocation to help those most in need. We are also pressing the Government of Kenya to do all it can to respond to the needs of its people, and in the longer term to address the root causes of Kenya’s chronic food insecurity.