142nd APHA Annual Meeting and Exposition

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Determinants of Food Insecurity among Youth Headed Households in Malawi. An Agricultural Policy Perspective

142nd APHA Annual Meeting and Exposition (November 15 - November 19, 2014): http://www.apha.org/events-and-meetings/annual
Wednesday, November 19, 2014 : 12:30 PM - 12:45 PM

Christopher Manyamba, PhD Candidate-Rural Devpt Planning (Food Security) , Department of Agricultural Economics, Extension and Rural Development, Institute for Food, Nutrition and Well Being, Pretoria, South Africa
Terri Ballard, DrPH , FAO / Statistics Division, FAO/Statistics Division, Rome, Italy
Evance Kazembe, BA economics , Planning Department, Ministry of Agriculture and Food Security, Lilongwe, Malawi


Introduction:Malawi has implemented the Farm Input Subsidy Programme (FISP) since the 2005/06 growing season which has been held as a tremendous success. However, large proportions (47%) of children are malnourished and 11 per cent of the population were facing severe food shortages in January 2013. Youths form more than half of the population of Malawi and could play an important role in ensuring food security for future generations. However, there are no studies on the extent of food insecurity or its predictors among youths in most developing countries including Malawi.

Methods:Using a 2011 nationally representative sample (Welfare Monitoring Survey) this paper investigates what factors determine household food insecurity among youth headed households in Malawi. A multinomial regression analysis is employed on three food security scores and independent variables of agricultural production.

Results: The results indicate that there are significant differences between youth headed households and the rest of the households. Not only receipt of fertilizer subsidy but its application, staple food production, land ownership, and source of income are the significant predictors of food insecurity (p-value<0.05).

Discussion:Providing sufficient agricultural productive means and extension services to youths in agriculture is a potentially pathway in improving food security and nutrition at household level. Furthermore, interventions should be guided by effective nutrition sensitive agricultural evidence based policies and programs.

Keywords: Youths, food security, poverty, fertiliser subsidy

Learning Areas:

Assessment of individual and community needs for health education

Learning Objectives:
Explain which factors are crucial in reducing household food insecurity in youth headed households in Malawi

Keyword(s): Food Security, Youth

Presenting author's disclosure statement:

Qualified on the content I am responsible for because: I am a PhD student focusing on food security and women empowerment from an agricultural policy perspective. Among my recent special interests are youths, who are the future potential food producers, but are neglected in many interventions and policy contexts.
Any relevant financial relationships? No

I agree to comply with the American Public Health Association Conflict of Interest and Commercial Support Guidelines, and to disclose to the participants any off-label or experimental uses of a commercial product or service discussed in my presentation.