- Approximately 3 million
- people are internally displaced
- An estimated 15 million
- people are facing acute food insecurity
- 46.7 million
The humanitarian situation in Sudan continues to escalate, with a steady increase in hunger. Over a third of the population, an estimated 15 million people including refugees, are experiencing acute food insecurity. Approximately 3 million people remain displaced by the crisis.
Increasing food and fuel prices, economic and political crises, conflict, displacement, poor harvests and climate shocks such as floods are the main drivers of food insecurity.
Political instability, resulting from the dissolution of the transitional government in October 2021 and subsequent resignation of the Sudan's Prime Minister Abdalla Hamdok in January 2022, has also been damaging. A majority of people face continuous humanitarian, security and economic challenges, driving them further into poverty.
High inflation continues to reduce households’ purchasing power, with people unable to meet their basic needs. A total 95 percent of households spend more than 65 percent of their total expenditure on food, while 48 percent are unable to afford one WFP local food basket. Food prices in Sudan are 137 percent higher than the same time one year ago.
Sudan continues to face persistently high levels of acute malnutrition and stunting, which constitute a significant public health problem. National prevalence of global acute malnutrition is 15 percent. About 3 million children suffer from wasting annually – meaning they have low weight for their height – with over 3 million children under 5 suffering from severe or moderate acute malnutrition. Around 178,600 children are at elevated risk of death if untreated for 3-4 months. More than one in three Sudanese children is stunted and does not grow to full cognitive and physical potential.
Two-thirds of the population live in rural areas, with the economy heavily dependent on agriculture. However, the sector is vulnerable to climate shocks, and productivity is low due to inadequate farming practices and post-harvest losses.
The already dire food security situation in has been exacerbated by COVID-19 pandemic and the high costs of seeds and fertilizer as a result of the war in Ukraine. In response to these challenges, the World Food Programme (WFP) works with the Government and partners to provide life-saving food and nutrition assistance, while supporting government efforts to strengthen social-protection systems.
WFP has supported over 5.7 million people in 2022, including 1.9 million internally displaced people. We plan to reach at least 9.3 million with emergency food and cash, prevention and treatment of malnutrition, school meals, reducing post-harvest losses by helping farmers improve crop-storage methods,, and interventions to improve food systems and safety nets including skills training and improving access to markets. However, funding is not keeping pace with rising humanitarian needs in Sudan, making it more challenging for WFP to support Sudan’s most vulnerable populations.
What WFP is doing in Sudan
WFP provides food assistance as a first lifeline and works to ensure that people affected by shocks have access to food. Vulnerable refugees, internally displaced people, returnees and shock-affected resident communities receive either food or cash, to provide choice. Through Food Assistance for Assets programmes, communities receive food or cash as to fill their immediate food gap. In return, community members work on projects including building or restoring infrastructure like roads or schools.
WFP aims to prevent and treat moderate acute malnutrition (MAM) in emergency and recovery situations, reduce stunting (low height for age due to chronic malnutrition) and prevent mineral and vitamin deficiencies through nutrition-specific initiatives. WFP provides ready-to-use-supplementary food to children under 5 and pregnant or nursing mothers who have been diagnosed with MAM. In collaboration with the private sector, WFP launched VITAMINO, a micronutrient product that is distributed to internally displaced people, refugees and vulnerable residents and sold through retail outlets to reach urban populations. WFP also supports national efforts to promote consumption of fortified foods and provides technical assistance for the development of relevant legislation and standards.
Food systems and safety nets
WFP also helps to improve food systems and safety nets to strengthen the resilience of food-insecure families. Through training in vocational skills, people are able to improve their livelihood opportunities and increase their income. WFP also supports farmers in accessing markets, while improving irrigation systems to boost agricultural productivity.
Farmers in Sudan lose an estimated 30 percent of their crops after harvest, often due to improper storage. To reduce post-harvest losses, WFP is promoting the use of hermetic storage bags and airtight silos among smallholder famers, thereby creating a market demand. Farmers improve their profit margins, with more of their crops safely stored for selling on the market. Meanwhile, WFP is also engaging the private sector to make the hermetic bags readily available on the market at reasonable prices, which also helps to boost the local economy.
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Partners and donors
Find out more about the state of food security in SudanVisit the food security analysis page
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