Journal of Food Security
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Journal of Food Security. 2019, 7(1), 13-19
DOI: 10.12691/jfs-7-1-3
Open AccessArticle

Food Availability and Household Dietary Diversity in Ruiri-rwarera Area of Meru County in Kenya

Ebere R. A1, , Thambura J. M2 and Mworia E. G2

1Department of Food Science, Meru University of Science and Technology, P.O. Box 972-60200, Meru, Kenya

2Department of Agriculture, Meru University of Science and Technology, P.O. Box 972-60200, Meru, Kenya

Pub. Date: January 22, 2019

Cite this paper:
Ebere R. A, Thambura J. M and Mworia E. G. Food Availability and Household Dietary Diversity in Ruiri-rwarera Area of Meru County in Kenya. Journal of Food Security. 2019; 7(1):13-19. doi: 10.12691/jfs-7-1-3


Food security broadly encompasses availability, accessibility and utilization of food. Household dietary diversity that relies on the number of food groups consumed over a given period has previously been used to measure food security. This study was conducted on 60 households who were randomly selected and data obtained through face to face interviews, structured questionnaires and key informant interviews in Ruiri-Rwarera Ward of Meru County in Kenya. The area being semi-arid receives average annual rainfall of about 700 mm with an elevation of 1100 metres above the sea level. Residents from this area mainly depend on subsistence agriculture for income and livelihood. Data from structured interview questionnaires was analysed using Statistical Package for Social Sciences (SPSS) software version 20.0 to establish the percentage frequencies, means and standard deviation. Chi-Square was used to test the significance of associations between variables. Household social demographic characteristics were investigated. The level of education, the size of household, time taken to the market, means of transport, land ownership, farm size, occupation, monthly income and their sources showed significant association with the number of food groups consumed by households (p<0.05). Location, marital status, household food expenditure, control of farming decisions, distance from the market, type of road network and nutritional status showed no relationship.

food security households food groups dietary diversity

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