The Ghana Statistical Service (GSS) has called on the government to be keen on ensuring food and nutrition security in the rural areas of the country.
According to GSS, food insecurity in Ghana stands at 11.7 per cent, implying 3.6 million people are food insecure.
Out of the 3.6 million, 78 per cent, implying 2.8 million people are located in rural areas and 22 per cent (0.8 million) in the urban areas.
Dr Peter Takyi Peprah, Head of Survey, GSS, indicated that food insecurity on regional basis in the country “is truly a national challenge”, and there was the need for interventions.
He was giving a presentation on the Comprehensive Food Security and Vulnerability Analysis (CFSVA) for Ghana.
The meeting brought together staff of GSS, nutritionists and officers from the Ministry of Food and Agriculture (MOFA) in the Districts in the middle belt.
Ghana government through MOFA and GSS in collaboration with the United Nations World Food Programme (WFP) and Food and Agriculture Organisation(FAO) conducted a nationwide Comprehensive Food Security and Vulnerability Analysis(CFSVA) for Ghana, in 2020.
CFSVA, a situational analysis on the food security situation in Ghana across all the 261 administrative districts, provides a comprehensive and detailed analysis of who the food insecure and vulnerable people are in the country, where they live, how many they are, why they are food insecure/vulnerable and what can be done to save their lives and livelihoods among others.
The analysis were done using indicators and a classification typically adopted by the WFP in their own assessment.
Food security has been described as a situation in which “all people, at all times, have physical and economic access to sufficient, safe and nutritious food to meet their dietary needs and food preferences for an active and healthy life”.
Deputy Country Director of WFP, Anna Mukiibi Bunnya, indicated that the analysis were done to enable the government to investigate explanations of food insecurity outcomes, nationally or regionally as the basis for adapting preventive policy actions that address root causes, including monitoring and ‘early warning systems’, enhancement of food and marketing systems, livelihood promotion and infrastructure development.
Dr Abaka Ansah, Ashanti Regional Director, GSS, mentioned that 50 per cent of the key drivers of inflation in the country was from food.
He said with the national programme of Planting for Food and Jobs, it was not expected that such a percentage of the inflation should come from food, and stressed the need for more food production to feed the nation.
Mr John Nortey, a director at MOFA, urged district agricultural officers and nutritionists to take keen interest in the data provided on food insecurity to enable them interact effectively with the rural folks to live a healthy lifestyle.
He said the results of the CFSVA would serve as a benchmark for tracking progress of Sustainable Development Goal (SDG)2, foster better targeting of food and nutrition security and contribute to planning and policy engagement.