Food insecurity in Uganda exists when people lack sustainable physical or economic access to enough safe, nutritious and socially acceptable food for a healthy and productive life. It may be chronic, seasonal or temporary, either way resulting into catastrophic amounts of human suffering.
The persistent malnutrition leaves children in Uganda weak, vulnerable, and less able to fight such common childhood illnesses like diarrhea, acute respiratory infections, malaria, measles and many others.
The root cause of food insecurity in Uganda is poverty. While the rest of the world has made significant progress towards poverty alleviation, Africa in particular Sub-Saharan Africa continues to lag behind. Projections show that there will be an increase in this tendency unless preventive measures are taken.
Food insecurity in Uganda has also been caused by the underdeveloped agricultural; a sector that is characterized by over-reliance on primary agriculture, low fertility soils, minimal use of external farm inputs, environmental degradation, significant food crop loss both pre and post-harvest, minimal value addition and differentiation and inadequate storage and preservation that result in significant commodity price fluctuation.
More so, food insecurity in Uganda is caused by lack of adequate storage facilities for food items such as cereals, yams, and beans which automatically leads to wastage thereby plugging the people into acute hunger.
Inadequate food processing has also led to food insecurity in Uganda. This results into direct consumption of large portion of the harvest without taking into consideration that will happen in the near future.
Food processing refers to the transformation of agricultural produce such as citrus, pineapple, mangoes and banana from their original form into another form for the purpose of consumption, sales or proper storage as it prevents food that cannot be stored easily in their original form from wastage.
The natural disasters like drought and landslides as well as climatic changes are also a major source of vulnerability to food security. The two mainly affect those areas that largely depend on rain fed farming and those highly dependent on agriculture. These events can result into massive crop losses, loss of stored food and damage to infrastructure and consequent increases in food prices. Degradation and declining productivity of agricultural soils are a serious threat to agriculture in many areas.
Poor Policies and uncontrolled population greatly affect food security in the country because probably the population rises above the capacity that the environment can offer. This implies that only a portion of the population can attain food, and perhaps that which is not enough for them.
This food security, lacking enough food for a health being has impacted the welfare of people. However, this can be solved by the combined efforts of the government, NGOs and the people at large.
The fact that food insecurity is directly correlated with poverty in Uganda. It is therefore necessary to not only draw food saving policies but also alleviate poverty in Uganda.
People should also always keep food for the future in well dry places like granaries and food stores in order to have what to eat during the times of famine. And this can only be attained through sensitizing the population on better ways of food keeping.
NGOs and individuals committed to changing lives should come together, hit different agricultural villages, teach them new techniques of farming and food keeping, that way we shall secure more food, hence it being cheaper and accessible to almost everyone.