Liberia: Gov’t, Partners Validate 2018 Food Security and Nutrition Survey Report
Monrovia – The Government of Liberia through the Ministries of Agriculture and Health together with food and nutrition sector stakeholders have completed the validation of the Liberia 2018 Comprehensive Food Security and Nutrition Survey (CFSNS) Report.
Report by Gerald C. Koinyeneh, [email protected]
According to the Report, Liberian households headed by individuals with little or no education are more vulnerable to food insecurity while the opposite is true for households headed by someone who has attended a technical institute and above.
The 2018 Comprehensive Food Security and Nutrition Survey demonstrate a higher percentage of 28 percent of household heads with no form of education. Of these households, 24 percent were notably food insecure while 21 percent were moderately food insecure and 3 percent were severely food insecure.
The survey thus established that higher educational attainment has a positive effect on food security status of the household.
On the aspect of nutrition, the survey gathered that the overall consumption levels of most Liberian households have an acceptable diet Consumption.
However, there are some households that are struggling to consume foods with the different nutrients. The analysis investigated the consumption of three key macro- and micronutrients – protein, vitamin A and heme iron – which is computed from the food consumption data.
Despite peaks of consumption of macro and micro nutrients nationally, it was revealed that there are pockets of households that are failing to consume the three key macro- and micronutrients.
These trends are observed in Lofa, Rural Montserrado and Rivercess Counties where households that have not consumed the heme-iron are 13 percent, 10 percent and 14 percent respectively. Lofa (eight percent), Nimba (seven percent) and Riverecess (nine percent) also have the highest number of households who never consumed proteins.
The Liberia 2018 Comprehensive Food Security and Nutrition Survey findings also show that there is high proportion of 75 percent of households who consume foods rich in proteins almost on a daily basis; while the least consumed on a daily basis are foods rich in Vitamin A (45 percent)-all the same, the figures are not alarmingly low.
The event held on Tuesday, August 7 was attended by major stakeholders including government officials and representatives of international agency and NGOs.
In a brief statement, the United Nations World Food Program (WFP) Country Director, Bienvenu Djossa noted that the successful conduct of the survey is a clear demonstration of a good working relationship between the Government of Liberia and its partners; adding that the report will be used as an effective tool in finding out the root causes of hunger and food insecurity in Liberia and finding ways to addressing them.
Also delivering a special statement on behalf of the FAO Country Representative, Mariatou Njie, FAO Senior staff, Jesse O. Yuan asserted that on the wake of the emergence of relatively new phenomena such as the high food and fuel prices, terrorism, the global financial crisis, and climate change, there is a need to better understand the lives and livelihoods of vulnerable populations so that effective policies and actions can be implemented to save lives and address the root causes of hunger.
“As many actors hold information about the food and nutrition security situation of a country, a common framework is required to ensure coherence. It is with this in mind that FAO, WFP and UNICEF have come together, to support the Government of Liberia, through the Ministry of Agriculture and the Ministry of Health to update the food security and nutrition baseline statistics in 2018,” he said.
CFSNS is a national assessment periodically implemented by the Government of Liberia with support from its humanitarian and development partners, particularly those in the food security and nutrition sector/cluster including but not limited to UN agencies, International Non-Governmental Organizations (INGOs), USAID, EU, ECOAGRIS among others.
It is a nationwide assessment that is statistically significant to all political subdivisions or counties of the country.
The Survey is a baseline assessment that gauges the food and nutrition situation in the country and provides baseline data for major food and nutrition security indicators both for the government and its partners.
The study delivers on the food security monitoring system articulated in the Food and Nutrition Strategy which emphasizes the necessity for regular monitoring of the food security and nutrition situation given the vulnerability of Liberia to external and internal shocks.