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University of Fort Hare (2021)

The impact of small-scale farming on food insecurity in rural South Africa over the period 2009 to 2018

Otunola, Olabisi Benedicta

Titre : The impact of small-scale farming on food insecurity in rural South Africa over the period 2009 to 2018

Auteur : Otunola, Olabisi Benedicta

Université de soutenance : University of Fort Hare


The concept of food insecurity has evolved over the years. However, due to the increases in the rate of hunger and food insecurity in many countries of the world, this phenomenon has continued to give both government and private agencies a lot of concern. As it stands now, achieving food security in African countries remain a major task regardless of various efforts made by most of these countries to reduce food insecurity and the household’s welfare by extension. As a result of the importance of this discourse, the issue of food security is number 2 on the United Nations’ Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). In South Africa, the rate of household food insecurity is still observed to be high, especially in the rural households. One of the most talked about way of combating food insecurity is through household farming. But food insecurity is believed to have affected the household’s level of productivity despite their commitment to improved welfare situation in the country. Consequently, this study sought to assess the impact rural household farming has on food insecurity in South Africa between the year 2009 and 2018. Using the South African General household survey, information on the household socioeconomics and demographic features were retrieved, as well as variables that are believed to impact the rural household agribusiness. In determining this, frequency counts, percentages, the logistic regression model was used. Also, the Household Food Insecurity Access Scale-score (HFIAS-score), multinomial logistic regression as well as the propensity score matching (PSM) was used in achieving the objectives of this research and the data was analysed with Microsoft Excel and STATA version 15. The result of the analysis showed that, the mean age of the household head is 53.96, 55.92, 56.65 for the year 2010, 2014 and 2018 respectively. Adding to that, the range of the households’ size ranged from 1 to 20 in the year 2010, 1 to 46 in the year 2014 and 1 to 20 in the year 2018. From the inferential statistic result, the gender of the household head is significant (p<0.000, 0.011, and 0.006) in determining household participation in agricultural activities for the years under review. The results of the PSM, using different matching methods reveals that the average treatment effect (ATT) of the impact of agricultural participation ranges from -0.121, -0.174, -0.132, and -0.106 in 2015 ; and -0.076, -0.173, -0.073, and -0.086 in the year 2018. This study therefore recommends that household farming should be encouraged by both private and public agencies as they contribute significantly to reduction in food insecurity. The transportation services in the rural areas should be examined in order to avoid situations that will lead to the increase in cost of transporting agricultural goods and services among the rural inhabitants.

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Page publiée le 16 mai 2022