Food security incidences based on monetary and caloric poverty lines in Mbeya and Makete Districts, Tanzania

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IISTE - Developing Country Studies


In Tanzania, a food monetary poverty line of TZS1 10,219 per adult equivalent for 28 days in 2007 prices and a caloric poverty line of 2,200 kcal per adult equivalent per day are used. However, it is not known where their uses give similar incidences of food security. Generation of empirical information on this was worthwhile to inform choices of which of the lines should be more preferable. This study sought to determine food security based on monetary and caloric poverty lines in Mbeya and Makete Districts. The specific objectives of the study were to: (1) Determine food security based on the national monetary poverty line, (2) Determine food security based on caloric food poverty line, and (3) Compare food security incidences based on the two poverty lines. Multistage sampling was used to select 233 households. The research was a cross-sectional one and was conducted through structured interviews using a questionnaire, focus group discussions and key informant interviews. Using the national food monetary and calorific food poverty lines, it was found that 82.8% and 79.0% of the 233 sampled households were food secure in Mbeya and Makete respectively. Monetary and caloric food poverty lines gave almost similar results of food security incidences, albeit the monetary food poverty line gives slightly higher food security incidences. It is concluded that the two poverty lines give almost similar food security incidences and have good potential to give reasonable results of food security status. It is recommended that the government and other stakeholders dealing with food security should use both food poverty lines almost equally since they give almost the same results.




Food security, Monetary, Calorific, Poverty line, Southern Highlands, Tanzania