Abstract

http://ssrn.com/abstract=1995538
 


 



Self-Reported Food Insecurity in Africa During the Food Price Crisis


Marijke Verpoorten


University of Antwerp - Institute of Development Policy and Management; Katholieke Universiteit Leuven - Center for Economic Studies

Abhimanyu Arora


KU Leuven - LICOS - Centrum voor Transitie-economie

Johan F. M. Swinnen


KU Leuven - LICOS - Centrum voor Transitie-economie; European Commission, DG II

January 4, 2012

LICOS Centre for Institutions and Economic Performance Discussion Paper No. 303/2012

Abstract:     
This article analyzes data on self-reported food insecurity of more than 50,000 individuals in 18 Sub-Saharan African countries over the period 2005 to 2008, when global food prices increased dramatically. The average level of self-reported food insecurity was high but remarkably stable, at about 54%. However, this average hides large heterogeneity, both within countries and across countries. In eight of the sample countries, self-reported food security improved, while it worsened in the ten other countries. Our results suggest that heterogeneous effects in self-reported food security are consistent with economic predictions, as they are correlated with net food consumption (both at the household and country level) and economic growth. Specifically, self-reported food security improved on average in rural households, while it worsened in urban households. Improvements in food security were positively correlated with net food exports and GDP per capita growth. We estimate that over the period 2005-2008 between 5 and 12 million people in the 18 SSA countries became more food secure. While the self-reported indicator used in this paper requires further study and one should carefully interpret the results, our findings suggest the need for a critical evaluation of the currently used data in the public debate on the food price crisis, which makes mention of hundreds of millions of additional food insecure.

Number of Pages in PDF File: 39

Keywords: Food policy, food insecurity measurement, Sub-Saharan Africa, food crisis

JEL Classification: Q18, I32, O55

working papers series


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Date posted: January 31, 2012  

Suggested Citation

Verpoorten, Marijke and Arora, Abhimanyu and Swinnen, Johan F. M., Self-Reported Food Insecurity in Africa During the Food Price Crisis (January 4, 2012). LICOS Centre for Institutions and Economic Performance Discussion Paper No. 303/2012. Available at SSRN: http://ssrn.com/abstract=1995538 or http://dx.doi.org/10.2139/ssrn.1995538

Contact Information

Marijke Verpoorten (Contact Author)
University of Antwerp - Institute of Development Policy and Management ( email )
City campus building S
Lange Sint Annastraat 7
Antwerp, 2000
Belgium
Katholieke Universiteit Leuven - Center for Economic Studies ( email )
Naamsestraat 69
Leuven, B-3000
Belgium
Abhimanyu Arora
KU Leuven - LICOS - Centrum voor Transitie-economie ( email )
Deberiotstraat, 34
Leuven, B-3000
Belgium
Johan F.M. Swinnen
KU Leuven - LICOS - Centrum voor Transitie-economie ( email )
Waaistraat 6
Leuven, B-3000
Belgium
European Commission, DG II ( email )
Wetstrath 200
Office 15172
1049 Brussels
Belgium
+32-2-2960442 (Phone)
Not available (Fax)
Feedback to SSRN


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