Levels of Household Food Insecurity in Rural Kenya: A Case Study of Kitui West, Lower Yatta and Matinyani Districts

Robinson Ocharo, Wambui Makau, Ayub Gitau, Joseph Mugachia


As a general rule, food security is built on three pillars which are Availability, Accessibility and utilization. The ability to ensure adequate food security hinges on the ability to identify vulnerable households. The degree of vulnerability of an individual, household or group of persons is determined by their exposure to the risk factors and their ability to cope with or withstand stressful situations. This study was a component of a project whose aim was to transfer technology and scale up water harvesting and greenhouse farming in the area with one of its objectives to establish the levels of household food insecurity.  Using a proportionate sample of 381 households two major tools were used to collect data. These were a structured interview schedule which was used to collect demographic information and a modified Household Food Insecurity Access Scale (HFIAS) was used to collect information on household food insecurity.  In the study it was established that 60.3 percent of the households were getting their food mainly from the farms. Only 39.4 percent relied on the market as their main source of food and 0.3 depended on donations. The households in Kitui had a HFIAS score of 6.86 and falling in the class of severely food insecure with hunger.

Keywords: Food Security, Food Insecurity.

DOI: 10.7176/JEES/9-5-06

Publication date: May 31st 2019

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ISSN (Paper)2224-3216 ISSN (Online)2225-0948

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