Restoration of food security

Restoration of food security aims at;

*enhancing production of healthy food,

*enhancing timely accessibility to food,

*enhancing proper food utilization and

*enhancing proper food waste management.

The following are the ways of enhancing restoration of food security;

1.Increase production capacity-there are several ways of increasing production capacity, namely;

manuration-adding manure in the soil increases soil fertility which in turn increases production.

It should be noted that inorganic fertilizers are not a healthy option.

Organic fertilizers are recommended. They feed soil organisms and enhance a healthy soil food web.

Besides farm manure i.e compost and animal wastes,biodegradable fertilizers are recommended. A good example is SUPER GRO which has been locally tested by the University of Nairobi and proven to increase crop yields by 167%.Read more here http://www.thenewgreenearth.wordpress.com/products

steady water supply-water is life.When there are no rains,irrigation can still enhance food production.

increase land for production-increasing the size of land meant for food production automatically increases the quantity of food produced.

steady supply of seeds-in the past,farmers prepared seeds from their harvests.

This ensured affordable and steady supply of seeds throughout the year.

Nowadays, most seeds are bought. This makes it hard for some poor farmers to plant under tough economic times.

Guaranteeing seed availability at affordable prices guarantees food security.

avail veterinary services-some farmers lose their cattle to sickness due to ignorance and lack of information.

Guaranteeing animal treatment reduces deaths.

2.Build food markets-building both local and international food markets guarantees accessibility to food.

3.Training-training both farmers and general masses ensures food security.

Farmers need training on healthy food production,food handling and food storage techniques.

The general masses need training on food utilization, food preparation is cooking, and the importance of variety.

4.Infrastructure development-development of good road transport, railway transport, water transport and air transport increases food availability, accessibility and utilization.

Some foods like fruits and vegetables need a faster transport network.

5.Develop a healthy food system-food system is about the movement of food from the farm to the plate and eventually waste disposal.

Both local and international food systems should be developed to reduce wastage.

Healthy waste disposal reduces environmental pollution which in turn enhances food security.

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Benefits of food security

1.Optimal health-nutritious food is the basis for great health.

Supplying the body with right nutrition in the right quantities consistently guarantees good health.

2.Increased human productivity-healthy people are very productive.

They have both the energy and the mental capacity to produce.

Thinking is the hardest work.The mind can not concentrate when the stomach is empty.

3.Social stability-when people desperately need food,peace can not be guaranteed.

Some nations have fallen due to food shortage.

4.Increased opportunities for prosperity-human productivity is both quality and quantity.

Surplus production of goods and services creates more opportunities for trade.

5.Low cost of living-a steady supply of food stabilizes food prices.

Increased productivity lowers the cost of living.

This explains why food prices are low during harvest time.

Effects of food insecurity

1.Loss of lives-extreme cases of food shortage results in deaths of plants,animals and mankind.

2.Social instability-some world governments have fallen due their inability to guarantee food security for their citizens.

3.Increase in diseases-poor nutrition is a leading cause for many diseases.

Some diseases are caused by malnutrition and others by undernutrition.

4.Poor food choices-extreme cases of food shortage makes some people to eat wild fruits. Some cause death due to poisoning.

We have had cases of people consuming maize seeds.

We have also seen some communities resort to eating rats.

4.Increase in poverty-food is a basic human need. During scarcity, food prices skyrocket. An increase in food prices raises the cost of living.

When people consistently spend more on purchase of food, poverty levels begin to rise.

It’s already estimated that millions of people live on less than a dollar a day.

This situation becomes worse with higher food prices.

5.Reduced human productivityloss of weight due to insufficient food lowers the ability to work.

Extreme hunger can lead to heart shrinkage.It may also impair the functioning of other vital body organs eg the brain and the kidney.

According to UNICEF, as many as 17million babies are born underweight each year due to inadequate nourishment prior to and during pregnancy.

This results in lower birth weight, smaller head size and brain weight and increased risk of illness and learning disabilities.

 

Types of food access

Food accessibility refers to affordability and allocation of food as well as the preferences of individuals and households.

There are 2 distinct types of access;direct access in which a household produces food using human and material resources and economic access in which a household purchases food produced elsewhere.

The UN Committee on Economy,Social and Cultural rights noted that the causes of hunger and malnutrition ate often not a scarcity  of food but an inability to access available food due to poverty.

Factors limiting access to food

Poverty can limit access to food and can also increase how vulnerable an individual or household is to food price spikes

Access depends on whether the household has enough income to purchase food at prevailing prices or has sufficient land and other resources to grow it’s own food.

Households with enough resources can overcome unstable and local food shortages and maintain their access to food.

Location can affect access to food and which type of access a family will rely on.

The assets of a family including income, land,products of labour, inheritances and gifts can determine a household’s access to food.

However, the ability to access sufficient food may not lead to purchase over other materials and services.

Demographics and education levels of the household’s head determines the preferences of the household, which influences the type of foods that are purchased.

A household’s access to enough and nutritious food may not assure adequate food intake of all household members,as intra house food allocation may not sufficiently meet the requirements of each member of the household.

*The USDA adds that access to food must be available in socially acceptable ways, without, for example, resorting to emergency food supplies, scavenging, stealing or other coping strategies.

 

Food exchange

Around the world few individuals or households are continuously self reliant for food. This creates the need for bartering ,exchange or cash economy to acquire food.

The exchange of food requires efficient trading systems and market institutions which can affect food security.

Per capita world food supplies are more than adequate to provide food security to all and thus food accessibility is a greater barrier to achieving food security.

Food distribution

Because consumers outnumber producers in every country, food must be distributed to different regions and nations.

Food distribution involves the storage, processing, transport, packaging and marketing of food.

Poor transport infrastructure can increase the price of supplying water and fertilizer as well as well as the price of moving food to national and global markets.

Food production

Food availability refers to the supply of food through production, distribution and exchange.

Food production is determined by a number of factors including land ownership and use,soil management, crop selection, livestock breeding and management and harvesting.

Crop production can be affected by changes in rainfall and temperatures.

The use of land, water and energy to grow food often competes with other uses which can affect food production.

Land used for agriculture can be used for urbanization or lost to desertification and soil erosion due to unsustainable agricultural practices.