Purpose- Food security (FS) is defined as sustainable access to safe and nutritious food for a healthy and active life. The present study was designed to investigate and determine FS status of rural households and the relevant influential factors. It was conducted on 432 rural households in six subdistricts of two districts of Sarpolzahab, West of Iran, in 2016.
Design/methodology/approach- The samples were selected using random cluster sampling, and FS status was assessed using United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) household FS questionnaire. Therefore, both socio-economic questionnaire and the household FS questionnaire were completed during a face to face interview. Data were analyzed using the statistical software package SPSS-22. Chi-square, Mann-Whitney, Kruskal-Wallis, and forward multiple logistic regression were used for data analysis.
Findings- Prevalence of food insecurity (FI) in all of the surveyed households was 65.3%, and household FS status between the subdistricts had a significant difference (P< 0.01). The results of the study showed that the prevalence of FI in the subdistricts of Posht-Tang and Sarab (83.3% and 76.4%, respectively) was higher than other subdistricts. Number of household’s members, land ownership, education of household’s head, activity status, and household’s income had significantly relationship with household FI (P< 0.01).
Practical implications- The high prevalence of FI is a major threat to the abnormal utilization of environmental resources in this realm. Therefore, given the impact of horticultural activities and diverse cultivation on household FS, macro and regional policies should be provided to increase the diversity of products through agroforestry and intercropping.
Original/value- This research presents the basic information on the FS status of rural households in Sarpolzahab and some related socio-economic factors the results of which can help planners and managers to implement interventions to improve the FS and welfare of rural households.
Food security, Food insecurity, Prevalence, Multiple cropping, Rural households
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