Agriculture, food security and nutrition
Updated: Dec 15, 2020
Food supplies and access to affordable food play a huge part in nutrition and good health. Malnutrition contributes to half of all child deaths.
In the 2018 Global Hunger Index, Malawi ranks 87th out of 119 qualifying countries. With a score of 26.5, Malawi suffers from a level of hunger that is serious. Maize accounts for over 80 percent of cultivated land, and the country produces an average of 3 million tons of maize annually - above the 2.3 million tons level needed for self-sufficiency. However, widespread food shortages are commonly experienced during lean seasons, leading many rural households to suffer from chronic food insecurity and malnutrition.
The United Nations Development Programme report that although Malawi is self-sufficient in food production (except during droughts) the population has increased more rapidly than the food supply.
Traditionally, Malawi is a fish-eating nation. Although Malawi is blessed with the ninth largest lake in the world and the third largest and second deepest lake in Africa, overfishing has resulted in the collapse of the fishery in the lake Owing to the Tilapia (Chambo) scarcity on the market, its prices have risen to unaffordable levels for the most Malawian people. Fish consumption fell from 14.2 kcal/capita/day in the period 1961-71 to 8.4 kcal/capita/day in the period 2001-2007. Meat consumption marginally increased, and vegetable consumption marginally decreased during the same period.
Umoyo will strive to create opportunities for sustainable local agriculture to improve local food supplies, and the ability to buy adequate food supplies.