A new food security update issued yesterday by the Integrated Food Security Phase Classification (IPC) shows that more than half of Sudan’s population is now facing crisis or worse levels of food insecurity (IPC3+), forcing families to make unimaginable decisions to feed their children. This is the highest number ever recorded in Sudan. If conflict continues, the situation could deteriorate further. 

The new figures represent a 45% increase since the last update in December 2023, and are more than three times higher than in February 2023, prior to the outbreak of the conflict. 

For the first time since fighting started, 755,000 people across 10 states are now facing catastrophic levels of food insecurity (IPC5), and experiencing an extreme lack of food. UNICEF has also noted a 20% increase in admissions for the treatment of severely malnourished children between January and May 2024 compared to the same period in 2023. 

Eatizaz Yousif, IRC Country Director for Sudan, said:

“Unfortunately, this new assessment confirms what we’ve feared for months. Three quarters of a million Sudanese - those living with catastrophic levels - are eating so infrequently that they are in physical pain from hunger, and their bodies cannot fight off disease. Children are at highest risk, typically dying at twice the rate of adults. Those who survive will likely face ill health for the rest of their lives. 

The conflict in Sudan has decimated agricultural production, restricted the transportation of food, collapsed the banking sector, undermined local markets, and created large-scale displacement, all of which are limiting people’s ability to feed themselves. At the same time, restrictions on humanitarian access have severely limited humanitarian actors’ ability to reach populations in need. All of this could--and should--have been avoided. 

This latest data is a clear alarm and call to action: the Sudanese people need an immediate halt to the fighting and the rapid scaling up of humanitarian assistance.”

Earlier this week, the IRC published a mid-year Sudan Crisis Alert Report which  charts the trajectory of the world’s worst displacement crisis and demonstrates the ways in which the Sudanese people have been failed. The result is an ever-worsening humanitarian catastrophe that has left more than half the population – nearly 25 million people – in need of humanitarian aid.. The Alert report follows IRC’s Emergency Watchlist 2024, which raised the alarm on Sudan, ranking it as the country most at risk of humanitarian deterioration. 

The latest IPC data reinforces the urgency of the report’s recommendations, including the need to secure a ceasefire, the need for parties to the conflict to grant immediate, unfettered access to populations in need, and the need for an urgent scale-up of the humanitarian response. 


Note to Editors:
The IRC has adapted and scaled up our programming in Sudan to address increased humanitarian needs. We are supporting people who have been displaced internally through multi-purpose cash assistance, health and nutrition, and water, sanitation, and hygiene programmes. The IRC also provides protection and empowerment services for women and children, including gender-based violence survivors in Blue Nile, Gedaref, White Nile, and Khartoum states. We have established offices in new regions, including Port Sudan, and are in the process of launching an emergency response in River Nile state to deliver primary health care services, cash assistance, safe water, and sanitation and hygiene services to vulnerable communities. We are also working to establish a presence in new locations to address gaps in humanitarian coverage and expand our programming in response to the enduring humanitarian crisis. The IRC is also working in Chad, South Sudan, Ethiopia, and Uganda to support refugees from Sudan. To learn more about IRC’s programming in Sudan, go here.