Sierra Leone: 1.3 million acutely food-insecure people

Published : November 2020

This small coastal country is also among the hotspot countries in 2020, exceeding 1 million food-insecure people, mainly in the districts of Bonthe, Kenema and Moyamba. Considering its small population size (8.3 million people), Sierra Leone is the country with the highest national prevalence rate of acutely food-insecure people (15.8%). Nearly half of its population is “Stressed” (phase 2). Following the Ebola crisis in 2014-16, Sierra Leone remains fragile to internal and external shocks. In 2019, economic shocks were the main driver of food insecurity. The national currency depreciated by 10% compared to 2018 levels (CILSS, 2019). Sierra Leone also recorded a decline of 15% in its cereal production, compared to the five-year average, due to unfavourable weather conditions, increasing the country’s dependency on imported foodstuffs. Many small-scale farming households adopted negative coping strategies such as reduced or irregular food consumption, consumption of seeds meant for planting, etc. According to the FAO, in March 2020, 60% of households spent over 65% of their income on food.
Severe acute malnutrition (SAM) of children under five years of age reached a peak in June 2020; some 88 500 children were admitted for SAM treatment (Page 22).

Countries : Sierra Leone

Themes : Agriculture & Value chains, Food security, Markets, prices & trade, Nutrition, Resilience, Health, Social protection

Scale : National

Langs : English

See also

Sahel and West Africa: Regional food and nutrition outlook


Sahel and West Africa: 42.5 million in crisis situation (phase 3-5) projection June-August 2023


Sahel and West Africa: 29.5 million people in crisis phase ( 3-5) March-May 2023


Sahel and West Africa: 28.9 million people in crisis phase ( 3-5) November-December 2022


Sahel and West Africa: 27.3 million of people in crisis phase ( 3-5), March-may 2022