Food security can still be a problem in areas that are capable of producing a surplus. In Nampula province in Mozambique farmers produce surpluses, yet poor post-harvest handling techniques and inadequate storage facilities keep the region at risk of food shortages. Lack of storage means farmers sell their produce immediately after the harvest when prices are low.

Grains (Photo: UNICEF/Sokol).In Nampula, Mrs. Rosa Agostinho, mother of seven, stores the family’s produce in old shirts, which are tied up into bundles and hidden in the roof rafters to avoid being stolen. Farmers like her benefit from new suitable storage and basic quality testing equipment in the Nampula Province. Farmers can store produce and wait for prices to improve. “Prices are low, as there is too much maize and beans on the market” says Mr. Silvio Mário Joaquim, a farmer in the region. “But now we can sell to the Forum in Netia and we will know we will get money this year and next year”.

Assisting Mozambican farmers to produce better quality maize and beans and to sell larger food surpluses helped increase production, income and access to markets. The UN can buy part of this good quality surplus fpr its own food assistance operations in the country.