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Citation Information

Type Thesis or Dissertation - Masters thesis
Title Uncovering the dynamics behind household food security in South Africa’s urban spaces
Author(s)
Publication (Day/Month/Year) 2018
URL http://wiredspace.wits.ac.za/bitstream/handle/10539/25844/Rendani Nenguda MSc Final Submission 2018​May 31.pdf?sequence=1&isAllowed=y
Abstract
Urban food security has long been viewed as secondary to rural food security in South Africa. With the migration of the large numbers of people from rural to urban settings, it has become crucial to place more focus on urban food security, especially in some South African townships where there are high unemployment rates amongst the youth. Often the interventions towards reducing food insecurity in urban settings are taken from the interventions which were previously designed for application in the rural context. In this study the factors constraining and enhancing food security in Tembisa, South Africa are determined. This will in turn inform the umbrella approach that has often being adapted in order to combat urban food insecurity. In order to accomplish this FANTA?s Household Food Insecurity Access Scale (HFIAS) is applied, which measures levels of food security and the Household Dietary Diversity Scale (HDDS), which measures the level of nutritional intake of
households. Food prices of the formal and informal markets were also monitored over a period of 6 months. A significant decline in household food access over the previous four years (2013-2016) was observed in addition to relatively low quality diets. Cereals and meat were a major part of the dietary intake of many of the households. The most commonly used coping methods included borrowing either money or food from friends and neighbours, this was sometimes done in conjunction with various other coping strategies. Much of the declining food access was attributed to the inflation of food prices, the lack of formal employment and high household members to breadwinner ratios. Furthermore, government initiatives such as social grants and school feeding schemes have proven to be imperative in reducing the vulnerability to food insecurity of most households. Unfortunately, regulation of the local food system has proven to be a difficult task, and this calls for government to play a bigger role in ensuring transparency from local food value chain, whilst not undermining the role of informal markets in enhancing nutritional security in South African townships. In addition, a high reliance solely on financial capital remains a limitation to the livelihood of urban households.

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