Food Insecurity and Associated Factors Among Households in Areka Town, Southern Ethiopia

Habte Samuel


Background: Food insecurity among poor urban households in low income settings is a major public health concern. This study aimed to assess the magnitude of food insecurity and associated factors among households in Areka town, Southern Ethiopia.

Methods: A community based cross-sectional survey was conducted among a total random sample of 309 urban households in Areka town, Southern Ethiopia, from March to April, 2015. Data was gathered using an interviewer administered and pre-tested structured questionnaire. The data was entered into Epi Info version 3.5.3 and exported to SPSS version 20.0 for analysis. Binary logistic regression analysis was used to assess the association between independent and outcome variable. Multivariable analysis was used to identify factors associated with household food insecurity after controlling possible confounders and statistical significance set at p- value < 0.05.

Result: The magnitude of household food insecurity was 69.6 % (95% CI = 64.1, 75.2). Household food insecurity severity status was categorized as mild for34.3%, (95% CI = (29.4, 39.8)], moderate for31.7%, (95% CI = (26.1, 37.0)], and severe for 3.6%, (95% CI = (1.9, 5.8)] households respectively. Being a poor household [(AOR = 3.13, 95% CI = ( 1.42, 6.91)],  lack of formal education among  household heads [(AOR = 4.70, 95% CI = (1.82, 12.12) ]  , households whose  monthly  food expenditure  was <500 ETB [ (AOR =6.9 , 95% CI =1.45, 32.9)]  and  between 500- 1500 ETB [ (AOR = 2.70, 95% CI =1.48, 4.91)] ,  and  household head’s age ≥ 50 years  [(AOR = 2.11, 95% CI = (1.12, 3.95)] were significantly  associated  with urban  household food insecurity.

Conclusion: The prevalence of urban household food insecurity was high in the study setting. The older age group and lack of formal education by head of the household, household poverty and less monthly household expenditure for food consumption was factors that significantly contributed to urban food insecurity. Therefore, an integrated feasible urban food security interventions should be emphasized at all levels by all relevant stakeholders targeting the urban poor households to ensure urban household food security.

Keywords: Areka town, Southern Ethiopia, Household Food insecurity.

DOI: 10.7176/JHMN/66-05

Publication date:September 30th 2019


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