Menu ENN Search

Food Security and Gender Equality

View this article as a pdf

This is a summary of the following report: CARE (2022) Food security and gender equality: a synergistic understudied symphony. https://careevaluations.org/evaluation/food-security-and-gender-equality/

Gender equality is fundamental to improving food security at local, national, and global levels. However, in 2021, an estimated 150 million more women were food insecure than men globally. Despite the links between gender equality and food security, most global food security datasets fail to collect or incorporate sex-disaggregated data. This restricts our understanding of effective actions to address gender inequality and food security and discourages policymakers from incorporating gender equality into food security solutions. Of 84 food policies identified in December 2021, only 4% referred to women’s roles as leaders in food security solutions.  

This report summarises secondary data exploring the correlation between gender inequality values and food security scores. Drawing on existing literature, the authors support the need to produce, publish, and use global data on gender equality and food more consistently. The primary results were based on a regression analysis of data from 109 countries that were included in both the 2019 Human Development Report’s Gender Inequality Index and The Economist’s 2021 Food Security scores.

Results from the regression analysis showed that, across the 109 countries, rising gender inequality was associated with reduced food security. This was supported by existing literature indicating strong relationships between gender equality and rural households’ capacities to acquire coping mechanisms and to reduce poverty and food insecurity. Specifically, findings from previous studies focused on:         

Women’s participation and the household: Food security was impacted by gender norms which define women's participation in income generation activities. For example, households in which women were employed, or contributed through income generating activities, had an 11% lower probability of food insecurity and their households experienced a 43% reduction in childhood malnutrition.

Diets and food consumption: Despite being responsible for 90% of food purchasing and preparation, women eat last and least. In Sudan, a substantially higher percentage (65%) of women reported being food insecure when compared to men (49%).

Agriculture and land: Women’s land ownership is associated with income growth and better child nutrition, yet only 15% of land worldwide is owned by women. A study in Burundi demonstrated a USD 5 (£4.30) return for every USD 1 (£0.85) invested in gender equality in agriculture, compared to a USD 2 (£1.70) return for every USD 1 (£0.85) invested in agriculture programmes that ignored gender equality.

Overall, this report highlights the need to incorporate and utilise sex-disaggregation into global datasets on food/food security. This would contribute to increasing the visibility of gender inequalities, which is essential given this report shows how increasing gender inequality is associated with lower food security. Identifying and addressing the differences in gender roles, responsibilities, and participation at the household level has the potential to strengthen global food security as well as the nutrition and health status of populations.

More like this

FEX: Women’s empowerment through food security interventions: a secondary data analysis

By Elizabeth Hohenberger View this article as a pdf Elizabeth Hohenberger is a Master's student in International Agricultural Development at the University of California,...

FEX: Wasting and stunting risk factors in Somalian internally displaced person settlements

View this article as a pdf This article summarises the key findings of a recent Link Nutrition Causal Analysis (NCA) study conducted in Settlements for the Internally...

FEX: Adolescent Girl Power Groups in Bangladesh: Placing gender equality at the centre of nutrition interventions

View this article as a pdf By Melani O'Leary, Asrat Dibaba and Julius Sarkar Melani O'Leary is currently a Nutrition Technical Specialist at World Vision Canada and has over...

en-net: Invitation to join CFS side event: CFS Side event: Gender Equality & Malnutrition Transformation: approaches to addressing causes & improved nutrition

CFS Side event: Gender Equality & Malnutrition Transformation: approaches to addressing causes & improved nutrition Friday 18 October 8.30 - 10.00 (CEST), broadcast...

FEX: Women’s empowerment, food security and nutrition of pastoral communities in Tanzania

View this article as a pdf Research snapshot1 In response to environmental, social and political pressures, many of the world's 300-600 million pastoralists are shifting to...

FEX: Gender impact analysis of unconditional cash transfers in south central Somalia

Summary of published research1 A woman tiedyes clothing Location: Somalia What we know already: Cash transfer programming can positively impact on nutrition and food...

FEX: The potential of nutrition-sensitive Conservation Agriculture: lessons from Zambia

By Anne Marie Mayer, Marjolein-Mwanamwenge and Carl Whal Anne Marie Mayer works as a freelance nutritionist specialising in the links between agriculture and nutrition. She...

FEX: Addressing poverty and undernutrition in India

Women collect drinking water in West Bengal Gram Panchayat Summary of research1 There appears to be a paradox between the headline messages on inequality and what is actually...

Resource: Women's nutrition: A summary of evidence, policy and practice including adolescent and maternal life stages

Please scroll down for links to download the Executive Summary (also available in French) and full report Lisez cet document d'information technique en français ici...

FEX: The State of Food Security and Nutrition in the World 2021

View this article as a pdf The Food and Agricultural Organization (FAO), the International Fund for Agricultural Development (IFAD), the United Nations Children's Fund...

FEX: Early lessons from Swabhimaan, a multi-sector integrated health and nutrition programme for women and girls in India

View this article as a pdf By Monica Shrivastav, Abhishek Saraswat, Neha Abraham, R.S. Reshmi, Sarita Anand, Apolenarius Purty, Rika Shalima Xaxa, Jagjit Minj, Babita...

FEX: Investing in the now and the future: Why governments should commit to adolescent health and nutrition

View this article as a pdf Report Summary 1 Save the Children UK and Scaling Up Nutrition (SUN) Youth Leaders recently released a brief making the case for prioritising...

FEX: What does nutrition-sensitive programming mean for WFP?

By Kathryn Ogden, Geraldine Lecuziat, Mutinta Hambayi, Quinn Marshall, Ali Elnawawi and Josephine Lofthouse (WFP nutrition team, Rome) The WFP team acknowledge colleagues from...

Blog post: The last must become the first: key insights from the second Institutionalizing Community Health Conference.

Community health programmes are neither cheap nor easy to implement well, but they remain a good and wise investment that can yield important dividends. The latest evidence...

FEX: Water for food security and nutrition

Summary of research1 Location: Global What we know: Safe and sufficient quantities of water are central to Food Security and Nutrition (FSN). What this article adds: A...

NEX: Women’s gardening in The Gambia

Olawale F. Olaniyan Olawale F. Olaniyan is a (volunteer) researcher with the International Trypanotolerance Centre and has over seven years of experience in agricultural...

FEX: Evaluation of community-based management of acute malnutrition in Yemen

View this article as a pdf This is a summary of the following report: UNICEF (2022) Evaluation of community-based management of acute malnutrition in Yemen. Background In...

FEX: Training Care Groups on sexual and gender-based violence in rural Niger

By Bruce W Larkin and Julie Tanaka View this article as a pdf Bruce W Larkin is a doctoral candidate (MD) at the Medical School for International Health at Ben-Gurion...

FEX: Combining two livelihood assessment approaches in Burundi

Summary of assessment report1 Team members participate in a group session on mapping This article summarises the food security aspects of an innovative study by CARE,...

FEX: Food systems for safe, nutritious and affordable diets in central Sahel

View this article as a pdf Lisez cet article en français ici This article provides the findings and recommendations of a literature review and a series of...

Close

Reference this page

Food Security and Gender Equality. Field Exchange 68 , November 2022. p73. www.ennonline.net/fex/68/foodsecurityandgenderequality

(ENN_7484)

Close

Download to a citation manager

The below files can be imported into your preferred reference management tool, most tools will allow you to manually import the RIS file. Endnote may required a specific filter file to be used.