Do The Food Culture and Practices of the Peoples Influence Food Security in Delta State, Nigeria?
Albert Ukaro Ofuoku*, Irene Itomare Okotete and Justina Ovwasa
Department of Agricultural Economics and Extension, Delta State University, Asaba Campus, Delta State, Nigeria
*Corresponding Author: Albert Ukaro Ofuoku, Department of Agricultural Economics and Extension, Delta State University, Asaba Campus, Delta State, Nigeria.
January 11, 2022; Published: January 20, 2022
In any given society, the extract culture and cultural practices influence their food security directly as well as indirectly. This study evaluated the influence food culture and practices have on household food security of Urhobo, Ukwuani and Igbo ethnic groups in Delta State, Nigerian 2018-2019. A study sample population comprising of 136 Urhobo, 106 Ukwuani and 104 Igbos was interviewed, while structured questionnaire and focus group discussion were employed. The data were treated to statistical analysis with the use of descriptive statistics and logistic regression model. It was found that all the households consumed more of carbohydrate-based foods; men mostly made agricultural decisions and were responsible for land clearing preparation and ridging, while women do weed, processing and marketing. All the households were into subsistence farming, 93.75% were involved in the practice of mixed cropping 91.57% acquired land for farming through inheritance, 69.68% had family members as their labour force. The husbands had the control of household income (89.84%) and the preference for food sharing is in the favour of the men. The food culture and practices that had significant influence on food security of household included land acquisition methods (1.183; P ≤ 0.05); control of family income (1.071; P ≤ 0.05) and preference of household food distribution (0.944; P ≤ 0.05). It was concluded that culture was a factor that dominate with regards to the number of times meals are consumed daily, choices of food in the household, decision making in agriculture, cropping system, division of labour, land acquisition, control of household income, preference in household distribution of food and, therefore, food security of household. It is recommended that both sexes be encouraged to diversify their income generation sources and released more money for purchases of food. Both genders should be given access to productive resources to increase agricultural production for food securities. Farmers need to be given encouragement to produce and consumed enhance quality foods, among others.
Keywords: Food Culture; Cultural Practices; Households; Ethnic Groups; Food Security
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