GEOGRAPHICAL AND TEMPORAL PATTERNS OF HOUSEHOLD FOOD INSECURITY IN MAIZE-GROWING AREAS OF EAST AFRICA Nilupa S. Gunaratna ...
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Geographical and temporal patterns of household food security in maize-growing areas of East Africa

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Poster prepared by Nilupa S. et al. for the International Congress of Nutrition, Bangkok, Thailand, 4-9 October, 2009

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Geographical and temporal patterns of household food security in maize-growing areas of East Africa

  1. 1. GEOGRAPHICAL AND TEMPORAL PATTERNS OF HOUSEHOLD FOOD INSECURITY IN MAIZE-GROWING AREAS OF EAST AFRICA Nilupa S. Gunaratna 1 , Hugo De Groote 2 , Shibani Ghosh 1,3 , Domisiano Mwabu 2 , Kebebe Ergano 4 , Stephen Lyimo 5 , James Okuro Ouma 6 , Florence Birungi Kyazze 7 , Dennis K. Friesen 2 International Congress of Nutrition, Bangkok, Thailand, 4-9 October, 2009 1 Nevin Scrimshaw International Nutrition Foundation, Boston, USA, 2 International Maize and Wheat Improvement Centre, Nairobi, Kenya, and Addis Ababa, Ethiopia, 3 Friedman School of Nutrition Science and Policy, Tufts University, USA, 4 International Livestock Research Institute, Addis Ababa, Ethiopia, 5 Selian Agricultural Research Institute (SARI), Arusha, Tanzania, 6 Kenya Agricultural Research Institute (KARI), Embu, Kenya, 7 Makerere University, Kampala, Uganda <ul><li>INTRODUCTION </li></ul><ul><li>Food Security in Maize-growing Areas of East Africa </li></ul><ul><li>Household food security is an ongoing concern in maize-growing areas of East Africa. </li></ul><ul><li>Food security can vary over space (as a function of climate, market access, and agroecological zones) and time (due to seasonality, particularly in rainfall). </li></ul><ul><li>Understanding the spatial and temporal patterns in household food security can improve targeting of research, interventions, and technologies to benefit those at risk. </li></ul><ul><li>Maize-growing areas are given particular attention as maize is the most important food crop in Eastern and Southern Africa. </li></ul><ul><li>Objectives </li></ul><ul><li>To analyze how household food security in maize-growing areas of East Africa varies over: </li></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>The calendar year, </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Maize mega-environments, </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Agroecological zones in Kenya, using a transect along the slope of Mount Kenya. </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><li>RESULTS </li></ul><ul><li>Study Area Characteristics </li></ul><ul><li>The study areas depend heavily on rain-fed agriculture: </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Agriculture is the main source of income. </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Farms are small and produce mostly food crops. </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Most households produce a large portion of their food on-farm. </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Maize is both the major crop and the major food staple. </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Poverty is high, and households differ significantly across countries in their livelihood characteristics. </li></ul><ul><li>RESULTS </li></ul><ul><li>Household Food Insecurity </li></ul><ul><li>For all food security outcomes, the majority of the variation is at the household level. </li></ul><ul><li>East Africa </li></ul><ul><li>Differences in food security at various levels – country, district, and community – are apparent, as is the increasing pre-harvest food insecurity along the slope of Mt. Kenya. </li></ul><ul><li>Communities with the greatest % population growth between 1990 and 2000 were more food secure during the pre-harvest season. </li></ul><ul><li>However, communities with greater population density in 2005 had lower household dietary diversity after the main harvest. </li></ul><ul><li>Relationships between food security and geographical characteristics may not be linear and warrant further investigation. </li></ul><ul><li>Most study areas lay in a single maize mega-environment (tropical mid-altitude mesic). </li></ul><ul><li>Kenya </li></ul><ul><li>Food insecurity during the pre-harvest season increases across the agroecological zones that span Mt. Kenya. It becomes more severe in the drier lower elevations. </li></ul><ul><li>Dietary diversity decreases, then increases along the transect. </li></ul><ul><li>CONCLUSIONS </li></ul><ul><li>Food security in maize-growing areas of East Africa varies widely within the year and between households, even within the same communities. </li></ul><ul><li>The high variability in food insecurity at the household level must be considered in the targeting of interventions. </li></ul><ul><li>Agroecology affects food security, as households depend on home agricultural production to meet their food needs. </li></ul><ul><li>Complex relationships are possible between food security and geographical factors. </li></ul><ul><li>ACKNOWLEDGEMENTS </li></ul><ul><li>We are grateful to the “Quality Protein Maize Development for The Horn and East Africa” (QPMD) Project and the Canadian International Development Agency (CIDA) for funding this research. We would like to thank the enumerators in the four countries for their diligent work and the participating families for their time in answering our questions. We also thank An Notenbaert (ILRI) for providing GIS expertise. </li></ul><ul><li>REFERENCES </li></ul><ul><li>Bilinsky, P., and A. Swindale. 2007. Months of adequate household food provisioning (MAHFP) for measurement of household food access: Indicator guide. Washington, D.C.: Food and Nutrition Technical Assistance Project, Academy for Educational Development. </li></ul><ul><li>Coates, J., A. Swindale, and P. Bilinsky. 2007. Household food insecurity access scale (HFIAS) for measurement of household food access: Indicator guide (v. 3). Washington, D.C.: Food and Nutrition Technical Assistance Project, Academy for Educational Development. </li></ul><ul><li>Swindale, A., and P. Bilinsky. 2006. Household dietary diversity score (HDDS) for measurement of household food access: Indicator guide (v.2). Food and Nutrition Technical Assistance Project, Academy for Educational Development, Washington, D.C. </li></ul><ul><li>Contact: </li></ul><ul><li>Nilupa S. Gunaratna, Ph.D. </li></ul><ul><li>Nevin Scrimshaw International Nutrition Foundation </li></ul><ul><li>150 Harrison Avenue, Room 232, Boston, MA 02111 USA </li></ul><ul><li>[email_address] </li></ul><ul><li>METHODOLOGY </li></ul><ul><li>The survey was part of a larger study in which some communities had access to project extension activities and others did not. </li></ul><ul><li>Households were selected using a stratified two-stage sampling procedure. The strata were defined by district and access to extension activities, the primary sampling units were communities (sampled with probability proportional to size, pps), and the secondary sampling units were households (simple random sample within communities). </li></ul><ul><li>Data were collected on household livelihood characteristics and food security. </li></ul><ul><li>Measuring Food Security </li></ul><ul><li>Common measures of household food security include: </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Months of Adequate Household Food Provisioning (MAHFP): The number of months in the past 12 months in which the household had enough food to meet its needs (Bilinsky and Swindale 2007) </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Household Dietary Diversity Score (HDDS) following the main harvest: The number out of 12 food groups that the household consumed in a 24-hour period (Swindale and Bilinsky 2006) </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Household Food Insecurity Access Scale (HFIAS) score for the month preceding the main harvest, based on the following nine questions (Coates et al. 2007): </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Measuring Temporal and Geographical Patterns </li></ul><ul><li>Data on rainfall and food security (based on MAHFP) are monthly. </li></ul><ul><li>Spatially, maize mega-environments are defined by rainfall and length of growing season. </li></ul><ul><li>More precise agroecological zones have been developed for Kenya, ranging around Mt. Kenya from upper midlands 1 (UM1, high altitude and rainfall) to UM4 (relatively lower) and from lower midlands 3 (LM3) to the lower, dryer areas of LM5. </li></ul><ul><li>Conceptual Framework </li></ul><ul><li>People in maize-growing areas of East Africa largely rely on home production to meet their food needs. </li></ul><ul><li>Agricultural production is influenced by geography and time. </li></ul><ul><li>It is therefore hypothesized that food security will also vary geographically and temporally. </li></ul><ul><li>Data Collection </li></ul><ul><li>A survey of 962 randomly selected households was conducted in 2007-2008 in maize-growing areas of Ethiopia, Kenya, Tanzania, and Uganda. </li></ul><ul><li>All sites have bimodal rainfall, with the driest areas in Tanzania (southwest of the highlands around Mt. Kilimanjaro) and the wettest in Uganda (northern Lake Victoria basin) and Kenya (the higher slopes of Mt. Kenya). </li></ul><ul><li>Households in these areas largely depend on home production to meet their food needs. </li></ul><ul><li>As agricultural production is highly seasonal, so is household food security, which closely follows rainfall and harvest patterns. </li></ul><ul><li>Countries differ in the prevalence, duration, and severity of food insecurity. </li></ul>HFIAS Score

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