WFP uses satellite imagery of rainfall and crop conditions and monitoring of food prices in local markets to identify and map populations and geographical areas most vulnerable to hunger (food insecurity) and then target their needs. This information is contained in a series of routinely published WFP reports (see example), which are invaluable for contingency planning and rapid response to disasters.
The WFP group that does the vulnerability mapping, Vulnerability Analysis and Mapping (VAM), began in 1994.Currently, there are VAM units in more than 50 countries, including Afghanistan.WFP works in collaboration with other information and decision support systems, such as UN/FAO's Global Information Early Warning System (GIEWS),and Food Insecurity and Vulnerability Information and Mapping Systems (FIVIMS),US/AID's Famine Early Warning Systems (FEWS),and those of other Non-Governmental Organizations.
Since 2001, the Goddard Earth Sciences Data and Information Services Center (GES DISC) has provided customized maps to WFP for various regions in Africa and Southeast Asia, including the following information:
- Monthly accumulated rainfall from 3B42RT
- Dekal rainfall from 3B42RT
- Flood watch: customized rainfall plots as needed
- Accumulated and anomaly rainfall for growing season
- Comparison between growing season and non-ENSO event in 2001
- GINI index