The development of national food security information systems is constrained by a lack of guidance on which indicators to use. This paper compares food security indicators across two seasons (summer and winter) in one of the most deprived areas of the Eastern Cape province of South Africa. The results show that only anthropometric indicators are sensitive enough to differentiate levels of food insecurity. The lack of consistent classification across indicators means that surveys must use a combination of food consumption and experience of hunger measures backed up by anthropometric measures. Targeting interventions is difficult if the measures cannot be relied on. Further investigation is needed to identify a suite of appropriate indicators for a national information and surveillance system.
It remains a great source of concern that, as richly endowed as the world is, each day millions of people go to sleep hungry and almost 870 million people, particularly in developing countries, are chronically undernourished. Also, every year, 6 million children die, directly or indirectly, from the consequences of undernourishment and ...