A new survey has indicated that 80 percent of households in the country have and can access food throughout the year, positive outlook towards government’s efforts eradicate food insecurity.
The Comprehensive food security and vulnerability Analysis, 2015 released on Tuesday shows that 17 percent are hanging in balance (are neither insecure nor secure) and 3 percent are food insecure.
Accordingly, the report which is carried out every after three years indicates the increase in households with food security lead to a reduction in malnutrition with stunting levels reducing to 37 percent from 43 percent in 2012.
“This shows that our development policies and programs to fight malnutrition have yielded positive results,” said Innocent Musabyimana, permanent Secretary in the ministry of Agriculture during the launch of the report.
Statistics from the report also show that underweight in children less than five years and wasting declined to 8 percent in 2015 from 12 percent in 2012 and 2 percent from 4 percent in 2012 respectively.
On provincial level, Western Province has the highest percentage of food insecurity due to unfavorable conditions particularly acidic soils in the Congo Nile belt that do not favour agriculture while Kigali remains high in food security.
“Levels of stunting are now highest in the West, while before stunting was highest in the North. Stunting in the North has seen a remarkable improvement from 52% in 2012 to 39% in 2015,” the survey read.
Jena-Paul Dushimumuremyi, national program Officer at world food programme says that the patterns of food insecurity and malnutrition are related to poverty, illiteracy and insufficient and acidic land for farming.
“Among the food insecure households, most households are found in the poorest or second poorest group,” he said.
Jan Bosteels of World Food programme-WFP says for the county to be on a resilience side, there is need for more efforts to fight poverty but also increasing coping strategies to have sustainable food security.
“We have to make sure that people have the purchasing power to buy food, the right food,” he advised with the report showing that 70 percent of households buy food from the market.
Experts further recommended the need to Improve and diversify agricultural production Improve coverage and targeting of assistance and social protection safety nets while also improving household living conditions.