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Moisture Deficits Affect Burundi Yields

Moisture Deficits Affect Burundi Yields

03 September 2014

BURUNDI - Harvesting of the 2014B main season crops, which represents about half of annual production, is complete and overall output is estimated at below average levels.

After a timely onset of the long-rainy season (February?June), rainfall ended earlier than usual by mid?April in most cropping areas. In particular, in northern districts of Kirundo, Muyinga and Cankuzo, significant moisture deficit at the crucial flowering/grain filling stages have negatively affected yields of beans, maize and sorghum crops.

Planting of the 2014C season crops, mainly short-cycle vegetables, which represent about 15 percent of annual production, is almost complete and harvest of early planted crops is expected to start by mid?September.

The imminent onset of the small rainy season (September?January) is expected to bring some relief to grazing resources, especially to northwestern highlands which are showing negative values of the Vegetation Condition Index.

The overall cereal production in 2014 (including an average output of the 2014C season crops) is tentatively forecast at 272 000 tonnes, about 10 percent below the last five-year average.

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