Floods in Pakistan have damaged at least 880,000 hectares of standing crops, including rice, maize, cotton, sugar cane, fruit orchards and vegetables, which represent about 3.7% of total national crop area, the United Nations’ food agency said on Tuesday, citing preliminary official estimates. “Damage to the current paddy crop is moderate and is estimated by Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) and Pakistan’s space agency (Suparco), as of 20 September, at about 252,700 tons, or 2.5% of the normal national production,” FAO said in an update on the flood situation in Pakistan. Nearly 92,000 livestock have perished and at least 5 million surviving animals were at risk, it said. Over 2.75 million people were in immediate need of food assistance in the monsoon affected areas of Pakistan, FAO said in a report.
Published in The Express Tribune, October 12th, 2011.