DETERMINANTS OF HOUSEHOLD FOOD SECURITY IN NAIROBI, KENYA
Following rapidly rising trends in population growth and urbanization, urban food provisioning is emerging as one of the most pressing problems in the developing world. This is especially so in sub-Saharan Africa where the pace of urbanization has contributed to the rise in urban poverty, food insecurity and malnutrition. This study analysed the dietary diversity and determinants of household food security among urban households in Nairobi. Data was collected from a random sample of 150 households in Embakasi Central sub-County in Nairobi. Household food security was analysed using the household dietary diversity score (HDDS) and food insecurity experience scale (FIES) while a probit regression model was used to analyze the determinants of household food security. The results show that while households’ consumption of cereals (88%) and dairy products (98%) was high, the consumption of Vitamin A rich vegetables (28%), eggs (19%), meats (10%), and fish (6%) was limited. The FIES indicates that 85.3% of the sampled households were food insecure ranging from 24% experiencing severe or moderate food insecurity to 61% experiencing slight food insecurity. The results further indicate that the probability of households food security decreases with age (p<0.01) but increases with income (p<0.05) and ownership of food preservation equipment such as refrigerators (p<0.05). The study recommends interventions to enhance dietary diversity and urban food security.