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Copyright © 2012. Nova Science Publishers, Incorporated. All rights reserved. Food Security: Quality Management, Issues and Economic Implications : Quality Management, Issues and Economic Implications, Nova Science

Copyright © 2012. Nova Science Publishers, Incorporated. All rights reserved. Food Security: Quality Management, Issues and Economic Implications : Quality Management, Issues and Economic Implications, Nova Science

HUNGER AND POVERTY: CAUSES, IMPACTS AND ERADICATION

FOOD SECURITY

Copyright © 2012. Nova Science Publishers, Incorporated. All rights reserved.

QUALITY MANAGEMENT, ISSUES AND ECONOMIC IMPLICATIONS

No part of this digital document may be reproduced, stored in a retrieval system or transmitted in any form or by any means. The publisher has taken reasonable care in the preparation of this digital document, but makes no expressed or implied warranty of any kind and assumes no responsibility for any errors or omissions. No liability is assumed for incidental or consequential damages in connection with or arising out of information contained herein. This digital document is sold with the clear understanding that the publisher is not engaged in rendering legal, medical or any other professional services.

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Food Security: Quality Management, Issues and Economic Implications : Quality Management, Issues and Economic Implications, Nova Science

HUNGER AND POVERTY: CAUSES, IMPACTS AND ERADICATION

FOOD SECURITY QUALITY MANAGEMENT, ISSUES AND ECONOMIC IMPLICATIONS

Copyright © 2012. Nova Science Publishers, Incorporated. All rights reserved.

MADDOX A. JONES AND

FRANCISCO E. HERNANDEZ EDITORS

New York Food Security: Quality Management, Issues and Economic Implications : Quality Management, Issues and Economic Implications, Nova Science

Copyright © 2012 by Nova Science Publishers, Inc. All rights reserved. No part of this book may be reproduced, stored in a retrieval system or transmitted in any form or by any means: electronic, electrostatic, magnetic, tape, mechanical photocopying, recording or otherwise without the written permission of the Publisher. For permission to use material from this book please contact us: Telephone 631-231-7269; Fax 631-231-8175 Web Site: http://www.novapublishers.com NOTICE TO THE READER The Publisher has taken reasonable care in the preparation of this book, but makes no expressed or implied warranty of any kind and assumes no responsibility for any errors or omissions. No liability is assumed for incidental or consequential damages in connection with or arising out of information contained in this book. The Publisher shall not be liable for any special, consequential, or exemplary damages resulting, in whole or in part, from the readers’ use of, or reliance upon, this material. Any parts of this book based on government reports are so indicated and copyright is claimed for those parts to the extent applicable to compilations of such works.

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Independent verification should be sought for any data, advice or recommendations contained in this book. In addition, no responsibility is assumed by the publisher for any injury and/or damage to persons or property arising from any methods, products, instructions, ideas or otherwise contained in this publication. This publication is designed to provide accurate and authoritative information with regard to the subject matter covered herein. It is sold with the clear understanding that the Publisher is not engaged in rendering legal or any other professional services. If legal or any other expert assistance is required, the services of a competent person should be sought. FROM A DECLARATION OF PARTICIPANTS JOINTLY ADOPTED BY A COMMITTEE OF THE AMERICAN BAR ASSOCIATION AND A COMMITTEE OF PUBLISHERS. Additional color graphics may be available in the e-book version of this book.

Library of Congress Cataloging-in-Publication Data Food security: quality management, issues and economic implications / editors, Maddox A. Jones and Francisco E. Hernandez. p. cm. Includes bibliographical references and index. ISBN:  (eBook) 1. Food security. 2. Food security--Quality control. 3. Food security--Social aspects. 4. Food security--Economic aspects. I. Jones, Maddox A. II. Hernandez, Francisco E. HD9000.5.F5965 2012 338.1'9--dc23 2012013595

Published by Nova Science Publishers, Inc. † New York Food Security: Quality Management, Issues and Economic Implications : Quality Management, Issues and Economic Implications, Nova Science

CONTENTS Preface Chapter 1

Chapter 2

Chapter 3

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Chapter 4

vii Does it Really Matter Whether Food is Produced and Provided by a Man or a Woman? Fatma Osman Ibnouf Impact of Vegetable Breeding Industry and Intellectual Property Rights in Biodiversity and Food Security João Silva Dias

41

Trade and Agricultural Policy Reform for Food Security in Tomorrow’s Africa and Asia Umar M. Mustapha and Richard J. Culas

71

Agricultural Policies and Environmental, Political, Economic, Social And Technological Threats for Food Security in Africa: Present Knowledge and Future Expectations Umar M. Mustapha and Richard J. Culas

Chapter 5

Role of Rice in Food Security of Bangladesh Sk. Ghulam Hussain

Chapter 6

An Assessment of the Brazilian Popular Restaurant Program as an Integrated Action for Food Security and Health Promotion Fernanda Dias Bartolomeu Abadio Finco, Marcus Vinícius Alves Finco and Ana Flavia Santos Coelho

Chapter 7

Chapter 8

Chapter 9

1

101 127

149

Food and Water Security Initiatives in Poor Urban, Peri-Urban and Rural Settlements in Ethekwini Municipality, South Africa Nicola Rodda

173

Technological Change and Productivity Growth for Food Security: The Case of Shifting Cultivation and the REDD Policy Richard J. Culas

197

Governance of Aquaculture: Principles and Best Practices Nathanael Hishamunda

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211

vi Chapter 10

Chapter 11

Contents Understanding the Path for a Higher Environmental Orientation at the Spanish Food Industry A. Peiró-Signes, M. Segarra-Oña, L. Miret-Pastor and M. De Miguel-Molina Role of Processing Industry for Food Security in India S. Mangaraj, M. K. Tiripathi and S. D. Kulkarni

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Index

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239

263

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PREFACE In this book, the authors present current research from across the globe in the study of the quality management, issues and economic implications of food security. Topics discussed in this compilation include women and food security in the Sudan; the impact of the vegetable breeding industry and intellectual property rights in biodiversity and food security; the Brazilian Popular Restaurant Program for food security and nutrition policy; food and water security in eThekwini Municipality, South Africa; aquaculture as an essential source of food security; environmental orientation in the Spanish food industry; trade and agricultural policy reform for food security in Africa and Asia; technological change and productivity growth for food security and the REDD policy; and the role of the processing industry for food security in India. Chapter 1- While there has been heated debate about the feminization of agriculture for some years, increased climate change and civil conflicts appears to be contributing to its speed and intensity. The reality is that currently it is largely women who produce staple foodgrains and provide their household with sustainable food supplies. The approach of male dominated food production sector and a traditional male role of chief breadwinner need to be completely reviewed. In the context of rural Sudan, where the pervasiveness of recurrent drought, socio-economic problems, conflicts, and males outmigration, recognition of the role of women in food production sector are a particularly important component of efforts in achieving household food security. The study aims to assess women’s contribution to their household food supplies and nutrition status in rural Sudan and thus valuing the potential role of women in achieving household food security. Employing primary and secondary data, the study argues that rural women play a crucial role in producing and providing food for their household consumption, thus, they contribute more to achieve household food security, more likely than men. The study indicates that in rural Sudan, women find ways to control their family nutrition status through decisions over food preparation, processing and preservation, and the daily food consumption quantity and quality. However, food security policy appears to be based on a relatively narrow agronomic perspective. Given the significant role rural women play as producer and provider of household food security, women are more likely to experience more significant disadvantage consequences as a result of policies that ignore the gender dimensions of the food sector. Since works of rural women remain mainly within the subsistence and informal economy, they are continuing lack recognition and assistance. Food insecurity and malnutrition are both consequences of failed policies. If this sounds right, the critical question becomes: does it really matter whether food is produced and provided by a

Food Security: Quality Management, Issues and Economic Implications : Quality Management, Issues and Economic Implications, Nova Science

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viii

Maddox A. Jones and Francisco E. Hernandez

man or a woman? The results from this study imply that, it does if policymakers recognize that enhancing the capacity of food producer and provider is a key part of achieving household food security and enhancing its food nutrition. Therefore, understanding the actual contribution of rural men and women in household food security will help in designing policies and programs to address the challenges of food security. Food security policies and programs that do not account for gender differences may have a detrimental impact on both women and men. Thus, the status of women as food producer and provider can greatly be enhanced and empowered through adoption of supportive national development policy, which include a gendered component with the ultimate goal of empowering women and achieving gender equality. Areas requiring further research were identified and prioritized. Chapter 2- Vegetables are considered essential for well-balanced diets. Vegetable consumption is rising, reflecting the consumer’s increased income, and awareness of nutritional benefits. There were 402 vegetable crops cultivated worldwide but only slightly over one half of the total number of them have attracted commercial breeding attention. Many vegetables are consumed near where they are produced. The rapid transformation of the vegetable market with the spread of super and hypermarkets worldwide, and trade globalization, forced the majority of vegetable producers to use commercial improved or hybrid vegetable cultivars to rise the quality standards and uniformity demanded in those developed markets. Vegetable breeding has to address and satisfy the needs of both the consumer and the producer. Innovation in vegetable breeding is dependent on specific knowledge, the development and application of new technologies, access to genetic resources, and capital to utilise those factors. Access to technology, as well as biodiversity, is essential for the development of new vegetable cultivars. Vegetable plant breeding is characterised by continuous innovations and the ever ongoing development of new cultivars that ever better meet the requirements of producers and consumers. The driving force behind this innovation is acquiring or increasing market share. Molecular breeding has strong effects on the sector through the introduction of marker-assisted breeding and the development of genetic modification. The plant breeder’s rights system is a specifically designed legal system for the protection of plant cultivars. Plant breeder’s rights give the developer of a new cultivar the right to exclude others from commercialization. Two intelectual property rights are relevant for the protection of innovations in this sector: plant breeder’s rights and patent rights. Some exemptions play an important role in plant breeding, such as the “breeder’s exemption”. The breeder’s exemption, that is not considered in patent rights, ensures that other breeders may in a sort of “open innovation” use such a protected cultivar in their own breeding programme, making the best properties of these cultivars available to the breeding programmes of competitors. Great emphasis on protection of cultivars by seed companies, including development of F1 hybrids, plant cultivar protection and patenting have been done. Chapter 3- In late 2007, the World Bank released its flagship annual World Development Report (WDR) that focused its attention on agriculture as a key instrument for development. The WDR report may be considered an indication of how agriculture went out of fashion in development circles, for which the world and indeed African and Asian continents are now paying the price in the form of food crisis that is continually shaping up. There are enormous sets of opportunities and challenges in Africa that call for more proactive agriculturally-based polices and more competitive trade terms. The Asian continent has been a key player in the

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world’s agricultural sector, for example, China’s agricultural sector is ranked the first in the world farm output and employs more than 300 million farmers. The Asian continent has also been offering diverse agricultural assistants to Africa through aids and exports of agricultural implements and food. This chapter’s objectives are two; the first is that it assessed the impact of agricultural policies and trade across Africa and Asia, with special attention given to Africa where there are many trade barriers and agricultural policy distortions. Second, it proposed appropriate agricultural policies and trade synergy which may boost intra and inter agricultural trade in the two continents. The chapter made an in-depth analysis of the agricultural policies, trade and programmes in Asia and concludes that they can be used as learning tools which may help in shaping the ones in Africa. It argued that the main role of international agricultural agencies and institutions on agricultural policy and trade is to promote sustainable growth of the agricultural business by encouraging trading blocks and individual countries to adhere to the international agricultural policies and agreements. The chapter concludes that the current agricultural policy and trade terms in many African countries are major barriers that hampers development and hence need to be reformed. The Chapter put forward that the key elements of the agricultural policy reform in Africa and Asia should focus more on smallholder farmer and identified barriers to sustainable food security in the two continents which should be removed. It also put forward that trade reforms in both African and Asian governments should be very gradual because markets for staple crops are still poorly organized, remains uncoordinated, have excessive transaction costs and risks, and are subject to price volatility which negatively affects net buyers of food and hence negatively impacts on food security. Chapter 4- According to a Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) report, Africa is the only continent where per capita food production has steadily declined for the past three decades. It is sad to observe from the report that while average per capita food production increased by 28 percent across the developing countries, Africa’s per capita yields grew by mere 4 percent against East Asia’s 45 percent and South Asia’s 16 percent. One of the obvious reasons is that even if Africa’s soils are the poorest in the world, there is no systematic effort to modernize the largely underdeveloped agricultural systems which could arrest the rapid depletion of the soil. Another 2010 FAO data show that of the world’s estimated 925 million hungry people, over 95 percent live in developing countries and 276 million of these people live in Africa. Practically, most of the African hungry people derive their livelihood from farming, which is characterized as low input based on unimpressive and low yield technology, rain-fed and single-crop system. The chapter found a multiple of factors that are political, economic, social and legal which impacts of food security and living stands in Africa. It is evident from the chapter that many African countries are at present practicing poor traditional systems of farming. It is found that the issue of modern technology in agriculture has not been fully placed at the forefront of African development agenda as observed in NEPAD’s major priorities that concentrated on promotion of sustainable political and economic systems, democracy, equal opportunities for women and good corporate governance. The chapter argues that more enabling policies on agricultural products production and trade should be encouraged. Policies should always be directed so that they are in line with major development goals. For example, the policy on subsidies should be reviewed based on its implementation challenges. Though there have been proposals to withdraw this policy. The pros and cons of this action should be critically analyzed because it

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can bring food production activities to a standstill, which may result into food insecurity. Secondly, the current market structure for some agricultural products is still facing challenges of continuously fluctuating prices, high production costs etc. and as a result some farmers may not be able to continue operations should the subsidy be withdrawn. The chapter also recommends a user-friendly agricultural system and simple but high output technology methods should be vigorously introduced and sustained by African governments, private sector, NGOs and farmers. This is for the purpose of increasing food production, food quality and food accessibility and availability which are essential requirements for food security and sustainable rural lives across the African nations. Chapter 5- The rapidly growing population of Bangladesh puts tremendous pressure on its scarce natural resources. To feed the growing population, there is an urgent need to develop more efficient and sustainable agricultural production and more equitable distribution systems. Rice plays a pivotal role in all spheres of life in Bangladesh and when it comes to food security of the rural farmers it is the most important commodity in terms of livelihood and food. Contribution of the crop sub-sector to GDP is about 11.16% and 61.0% of the AGDP. The contribution of crop sub-sector to AGDP is dominated by rice. The rural work force of 47.4 million is directly or indirectly engaged in agricultural activities at farm level and different components of value/market chain. Rice is grown all year round in Bangladesh having three distinct rice growing seasons - namely Aus, Aman and Boro. It is grown in four ecosystems viz., irrigated rice (Boro), rainfed or partially irrigated (transplanted Aus and Aman), rainfed upland (direct-seeded Aus), and deepwater (broadcast Aman). More than 73% of the rice area is covered by modern varieties developed by the Bangladesh Rice Research Institute (BBRI) and 6% by hybrid rice which are marketed by the private seed companies. The local low yielding varieties are grown in the marginal lands. Currently, the net cropped area (NCA) and the total cropped area (TCA) of Bangladesh are 7.94 Mha and 14.41 Mha respectively. More than 33.77 Mt cereals were produced from 12.62 Mha of the TCA and 31.98 Mt of rice was produced from 11.35 Mha. On average, each person in the world consumes more than 50 kg of rice a year. Asian countries consume about 86.70% of the global rice production and Bangladesh consumes 6.50% of the global rice production. In Bangladesh per capita availability of rice per year is about 160 kg which makes it the fourth highest consuming nation of the world. Rice is still the dominant source of energy and protein in an average Bangladeshi diet. The actual intake of rice is about 416 g per capita per day. Of the 2318 kcal, 69% of the total calorie and 50% of total protein come from it. Although the desirable levels of these are 46% and 36% respectively; upsetting the dietary balance with respect to protein and fat intake. The Government policies and strategies to improve food security are aligned with access, utilization and availability through Public Safety Net Programs, research and extension to increase productivity of agricultural crops, and stabilization of food prices. The average annual growth rate (2001-11) is about 1.34%, which translates into about two million additional new mouths every year need to be fed. The projected population for the 2020, 2030, 2040, and 2050 would be 169.54, 189.85, 205.13, and 217.54 million respectively and to feed them the estimated food requirements based on the desirable dietary pattern, especially rice and wheat, would be 23.020, 25.778, 27.853 and 29.538 Mt. On top of this climate change will complicate the food security issue further. Chapter 6- The Brazilian Popular Restaurant Program is a food security and nutrition policy that seeks to generate a food protection net in areas where vulnerable people eat most

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of their meals outside of their home. For this purpose, the Program targets those who are considered the most vulnerable people, especially regarding socio-economic and health conditions. Based on this the research aims to assess the Brazilian Popular Restaurant Program as an integrated action for food security and health. Thus, a survey was carried out with respect to the socio-economic and health conditions of the popular restaurants’ users as well as a microbiologic analysis of the meals offered by the restaurants, both located in the city of Palmas in northern Brazil. The results point out that the Program needs to be improved specifically regarding the inclusion of the target group, as well as towards the development of health actions and hygienic-sanitary quality of the meals. Chapter 7- South Africa has approximately 2.2 million food insecure households, amounting to approximately 14 million individuals, who spend more than 60% of their income on food and who are vulnerable to food price increases (Morokolo, 2009). Among the policies the South African government has adopted to tackle this issue is a “one house, one food garden” policy (Morokolo, 2009). This policy has been adopted by eThekwini Municipality, the municipal region incorporating the old city of Durban and its surrounding areas (Khanyisa Projects, 2010). Food security initiatives in eThekwini Municipality are spearheaded by two municipal departments: the Infrastructure Management and Socioeconomic Development (IMS) Department and eThekwini Water and Sanitation (EWS). The main focus of the former unit is the support of community and communal food growers, while the latter grouping concentrates on food security projects linked to water and sanitation provision. The pairing is logical since a reliable supply of water and nutrients is essential to cultivation of food crops and reuse of different waste streams is a sustainable, low-cost source of these. Chapter 8- In many parts of the forest-agriculture frontiers of the tropics, shifting cultivation is practiced as a way of subsistence farming. In particular, widespread poverty and rural population growth are the prevalent causes that aggravate the need for encroaching into the forestland for subsistence farming in these frontiers. In such areas, economic policies and technological change to improve agricultural productivity are vital to avoid the expansion of agriculture by means of shifting cultivation. In particular, as we are in the age of global climate change, resource use and management practices that rely on the use of land clearing and biomass burning, thus emitting carbon into the atmosphere must get our careful attention, despite the need to bring more land under cultivation for enhancing food security. This situation is quite challenging and requires much more careful attention in the case of shifting cultivation practiced in some Asian and African countries. For instance, shifting cultivation by land clearing and biomass burning recycles phosphorous and other nutrients but contributes to deforestation, emission of greenhouse gases, loss of biodiversity, and increased soil erosion and land degradation, etc, and as yet is an important livelihood and food security strategy for millions of smallholders. Because shifting cultivation is so different from the forms of agriculture mostly practiced in the lowlands, and by majority population, it is one of the most misunderstood land use systems. Therefore, in the name of forest conservation and land development, governments in Asia and Africa have devised ad-hoc policies and laws seeking to eradicate shifting cultivation. The reasons usually given for such restrictive state policies are that shifting cultivation is: technologically primitive to improve agricultural productivity; prevents development and thus keeps people trapped in poverty; destructive to forests and soils; and contributing to global greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions by deforestation. However, by

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Maddox A. Jones and Francisco E. Hernandez

adapting appropriate technology and agronomic practices agricultural productivity can be improved in those tropical areas. Such technological changes for more productive and environmentally friendly agriculture, by means of zero tillage/reduced tillage, mulching, integrated plant nutrient management using both organic and mineral fertilizer, improved crop rotations, and improvements in water productivity can not only avoid shifting cultivation, but also contribute to food security, rural livelihood, poverty alleviation, improved soil fertility, and reduced GHG emissions from deforestation. In particular, agricultural productivity can be improved by provision of input subsidies for mineral (inorganic) fertilizers to build on sound ecological principles and agronomic practices; access to finance and micro-credit; improving the infrastructure; capacity development for men and women farmers; and research and development targeting poor rural areas and addressing emerging questions of agro-defence. This chapter therefore discusses the opportunities for technological change in agriculture by rethinking the Agricultural Input Subsidy Programs (as economic-policy reforms) in Asian and African countries, as well as the new financial incentives arising from REDD (as Payments for Environmental Services from UN-REDD program) for those countries for a land use transition towards more intensified agriculture. It is argued that unlocking the potential of ecosystem markets can provide new income to the farmers for the services they provide anyway, while safeguarding the resource quality and enhancing food security. Chapter 9- In 2012 aquaculture provides half of all human consumption of seafood; it is an essential source of food security in many parts of the world. Aquaculture not only increases the availability of food (particularly protein) but also generates employment incomes, enhancing food accessibility. Governance of the sector is one of the principal reasons aquaculture prospers in some jurisdictions but not others. Secure property rights, efficient and effective regulations, transparent leasing procedures and accountability are aspects of governance which encourage risk-taking and investment. Governance is important for all sectors but for aquaculture there must be a balance between promoting the industry and preventing it from creating environmental and social damage. The global nature of modern aquaculture and its novelty provides an opportunity to analyze what contributes to its success (or failure), and to learn from governance best practices. The paper uses Norway as a model of effective governance in aquaculture. Chapter 10- This chapter uses PITEC (Technological Innovation Panel), 2009 database to establish the environmental orientation while innovating of firms belonging to the Spanish food industry. Underlying factors that are affecting environmental orientation are identified and the effectiveness of these factors in predicting the environmental orientation is demonstrated. One-way-Anova and multiple discriminant analysis on environmental orientation of the firms while innovating show that larger firms with greater R&D activity and innovation results are less dependent on information sources and are, also, more likely to be environmentally oriented. The study also shows better orientation for biotech firms and for firms that cooperate with other companies, that have more public financial support and that don’t have internal factors hindering innovation. Chapter 11- Agro-processing development could make a significant contribution to the vocation of agriculture and hence, in national and international development. Agro-processing at village/rural level can expand the local markets for primary agricultural products, add value by vertically integrating primary production and food processing systems and minimize post harvest losses. Being mindful of the pitfalls and obstacles to agro-processing related development, it may be instructive to understand the concept of establishing agro-processing

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center and its economic perspective associated to increase income generation and sustainable rural development. The country has achieved breakthrough in agricultural production. However, level of productivity is low compared to many neighboring countries, let alone developed world. As a result margin of profit to the farmers in most of the agricultural commodities is very low. Post harvest loss prevention, value addition, and entrepreneurship development are important for higher income and rural employment generation (Shukla, 1993). Agriculture contributes 25% to annual gross domestic products and provides livelihood to more than 76% of the people. The agricultural processing sector has immense potential for value addition and employment generation. Sun drying, winnowing, paddy hulling, pulse milling, oil expelling, wheat milling, pickle making, gur and khandsari, ghee & khoa etc. are the major processing activities undertaken by the farmers. The traditional processing equipment used by the farmers include supa, chalni, chakiya, janta, silbatta, Okhli, mathani, puffing pan, mini oil ghanis/kolhus, rice hullers and flour chakkis etc. The quality of the products made by the traditional methods has been accepted and popular in the rural markets but have little scope for marketing in urban areas due varied consumers preferences. High capacity modern machines introduced in urban and sub-urban areas for processing of agricultural produce have helped in increasing the income of the processors. But, many of the agro-processing activities earlier being undertaken in the rural areas are now gradually being shifted to urban areas as a result rural workers are deprived of their due share of modernized agriculture. Farmers and industries mutually depend on each other for inputs and raw materials for processing. A balance has to be maintained in the agricultural development so that the farmers equally share the fruits of the higher production by involving them in primary processing and value addition. Also agro industries lead to the creation of forward and back ward linkages on large scale by maximizing complementarities of agriculture and industries (Desai, 1986).

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In: Food Security ISBN: 978-1-62081-716-2 Editors: Maddox A. Jones and Francisco E. Hernandez © 2012 Nova Science Publishers, Inc.

Chapter 1

DOES IT REALLY MATTER WHETHER FOOD IS PRODUCED AND PROVIDED BY A MAN OR A WOMAN? Fatma Osman Ibnouf Fatma Osman Ibnouf is an assistant professor and researcher at Development Studies and Research Institute, University of Khartoum, Sudan

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ABSTRACT While there has been heated debate about the feminization of agriculture for some years, increased climate change and civil conflicts appears to be contributing to its speed and intensity. The reality is that currently it is largely women who produce staple foodgrains and provide their household with sustainable food supplies. The approach of male dominated food production sector and a traditional male role of chief breadwinner need to be completely reviewed. In the context of rural Sudan, where the pervasiveness of recurrent drought, socio-economic problems, conflicts, and males outmigration, recognition of the role of women in food production sector are a particularly important component of efforts in achieving household food security. The study aims to assess women’s contribution to their household food supplies and nutrition status in rural Sudan and thus valuing the potential role of women in achieving household food security. Employing primary and secondary data, the study argues that rural women play a crucial role in producing and providing food for their household consumption, thus, they contribute more to achieve household food security, more likely than men. The study indicates that in rural Sudan, women find ways to control their family nutrition status through decisions over food preparation, processing and preservation, and the daily food consumption quantity and quality. However, food security policy appears to be based on a relatively narrow agronomic perspective. Given the significant role rural women play as producer and provider of household food security, women are more likely to experience more significant disadvantage consequences as a result of policies that ignore the gender dimensions of the food sector. Since works of rural women remain mainly within the subsistence and informal economy, they are continuing lack recognition and assistance. Food insecurity and malnutrition are both consequences of failed policies. If this sounds right, the critical question becomes: does it really matter whether food is produced and provided by a man or a woman? The results from this study imply that, it does if

Food Security: Quality Management, Issues and Economic Implications : Quality Management, Issues and Economic Implications, Nova Science

2

Fatma Osman Ibnouf policymakers recognize that enhancing the capacity of food producer and provider is a key part of achieving household food security and enhancing its food nutrition. Therefore, understanding the actual contribution of rural men and women in household food security will help in designing policies and programs to address the challenges of food security. Food security policies and programs that do not account for gender differences may have a detrimental impact on both women and men. Thus, the status of women as food producer and provider can greatly be enhanced and empowered through adoption of supportive national development policy, which include a gendered component with the ultimate goal of empowering women and achieving gender equality. Areas requiring further research were identified and prioritized.

Keywords: Women, Gender, Household Food Supplies and Nutrition, Rural Sudan, Food policy

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1. INTRODUCTION While disaggregation of data on women's contributions to agricultural production is increasing, however there is still a lack of sex disaggregated data on women’s contribution to household food security in Sudan. One reason for the underrepresentation of women in food security could be that the data do not account for many of women's productive activities such as home gardening, domestic animals rearing and post-harvest activities (processing and preservation of raw materials). Additionally, while women in rural Sudan usually perform agricultural work in the subsistence sector, these roles may be counted under 'helpers', ‘farmer’s wives/mothers’, ‘unpaid family laborers’ or as ‘own-account workers’ rather than as 'real' contributors to the household economy. Osman (2002, p. 24) states that women's productive work in the Sudan, such as agricultural labour, tends to be perceived as an extension of their household duties. Home–garden, animals, and processed food products contribute to adding nutritional value to household food consumption and form valuable resources in bridging food shortage of the rural people. Not at all surprising that the development policy affects women and men differently, and impacts on gender relationships, regarding women as beneficiaries and in consequence they do not enjoy an equal position with their male counterparts. Since women augment the household's ability to procure food and to achieve food security, their work in all of the aforementioned categories is extremely important to ensure household food security. Many rural areas in Sudan were (and will continue to be) affected by the natural hazards (i.e. recurrent droughts, desertification), socio-economic problems and civil strife. The consequence of these risk events has considerable gendered impacts and differentiation gender workloads and roles. Not many attempts have been made in food security literature to link these risk events and circumstances in a systematic way to gendered consequences. Among gendered impacts of these crises are their impacts on responsibility to achieve household food security as men and women respond differently to these risk events, as follows: (1) While men have more possibilities to immigrate outside the risk areas, rural women are usually less mobile and are usually taking over agricultural work in men’s absence. As consequence women more than men have become the primary producers of subsistence for families. (2) Shifts in the labor market, where men are taking up more those activities that have greater potential to earn cash and women are being pushed into non-

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monetized subsistence activities. (3) Men are dominant force in the cash crop sector and the wage employment whereas women carry the heavier work burden in food production where they get lower or no returns for their work. (4) The escalating cost of living in the Sudan, as well in many developing countries, during the past three decades has led to increase the role of women the in the rural economy that women become more engaging in activities to generate income. (5) In war-affected areas, since conflict breaks down economic and social structures, this often results in an increased burden on women, both during and after conflict, in respect of finding food to their household members. Therefore, the natural hazards, socioeconomic problems and civil conflicts result in substantial increases of women burdens and roles in household food security. But to what extent are these gendered impacts realized, in relation to the rural women and has growing role in food production and provision on which the household depends for achieving food security? These gendered consequences have not been noted or addressed through sensitive development policy and has not been well researched. Thus, the work of rural women as food producer and provider is lack recognition and assessment and thus supportive and assistance. Government development plans is largely gender-biased. Rural women continue to be bypassed by resilience-building initiatives – including inputs, credit, extension, education, and training services. Within the agriculture sector and compared to men, rural women are generally held less power, regarding resource management and decision making. The lack of a gendered assessment of development policy meant that the impacts on women are particularly difficult. Such a situation constitutes a major obstacle for the evolution of balanced sustainable rural development in terms of gender equality. There is a need for a gendered analysis and detailed gender-sensitive development policy addressing the current and the predicted circumstances. In this regards, the emphasis for policy-makers has to be recognized of the value of disaggregating policy goals in terms of its impact on both women and men. Agriculture is at the heart of food security, it is the source of food and also because of the multiple roles it plays as a source of employment, livelihood and as one of the main motors of economic activity (Maxwell, 2001, p. 32). Sudan is an agricultural country with fertile land, plenty of water resources, livestock, forestry resources, and agricultural residues (Omer, 2008, p. 1867). Agriculture production is the important provider of national food security. Self–sufficiency in food production and food security is important and is a key element in the economic strategy of the country. In Sudan, government interventions are contentious particularly the support for male farmers. Agricultural strategies are built on the assumption that males are the main producers; and in the formulation and implementation of any rural development project, women are always ignored and undervalued. Planners depend on the official data provided by national statistics and censuses to design their policies. However, it should be stressed that the official data in these sources underestimates the contribution of women to food production and household food security. This is because of the deficiencies inherent in the standard measures of work and only wage work is record. Due also to the lack of the gender classification in different agricultural and household activities only the work done by men is recognised. Rural women non–farm activities, including post–harvest activities (processing and preservation) and other income generating activities, carried out to help to feed family members are generally ignored in the national statistics and accounts. However, they are essential economic functions that enhance livelihood opportunities and sustain food supplies for the household's members. In addition, rural women are particularly overlooked when it comes to the introduction of modern technologies that can be used in the

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farm activities. Although the introduction of modern agricultural technologies (machines) can decrease the manual nature of works in the farms, however this may lead to a situation where the heavier and more repetitive farming works are performed by women. Modern agricultural machineries are usually assigned to men who tend to assume tasks that become mechanized and who access new skills first. While women works consistently remain manual, or women may be pushed into un-mechanized farm activities where under-investment of technology is the feature. Assessment and analysis to determine the various roles that men and women play in the rural Sudan in terms of producing and providing food security for their family and how the aforementioned risk events affect them differently warrant immediate attention. There is a need to view household food security with a gender perspective and to generate evidence that draws the attention of policy makers for greater understanding of correlation gender with household food security. Then policies and programs would be designed in ways that are beneficial and create a sense of equality between the sexes. This study endeavors to increase the understanding of the rural women role in household food security sequentially to assist to develop gender sensitive interventions and policies to create a space for improving women status. Enhancing women food production and provision capacity has unquestionable a direct impact on household food security and nutrition. This paper aims to contribute to the burgeoning literature on role of women in food security in two ways. First, it aim to explore the actual role that rural women play in procuring adequate supplies of food for their households; and second valuing the potential role of women in reducing malnutrition by assessing women’s contribution to their household nutrition status. It focuses on these two issues in particular as they influence the kind of interventions that can serve the prospects for increased equality and living standards for women as food producers and providers, as distinct from the larger literature on role of women in household food security. These identified issues will help to come up with recommendations for how food producers and providers can best be supported and empowered. The outcomes will lead to outlining the fundamental areas of research for the food security research-based-policy solutions for the subsequent years. The assessment of the gender role in household food security is one of the most existing and upcoming challenging issues facing researchers and policymakers alike. Undoubtedly consistent and well-informed policies can help to address and to reduce the impact of future food security problems. That is why new knowledge must be gathered through gendersensitive research to better understand the complexities of gender issues in the food security in order to develop appropriate actions, programs and productive policies. A better understanding of what the inequalities and disadvantages that women as food producer and provider face would be a fruitful area for future research. Researchers can ask a number of questions to establish a picture of the empowering women for gender equality. Some ideas follow: impact of women growing role as food producer and provider on gender equality, in terms of whether economic success results in changing the status of women i.e. results in well being of women within the household? Does it increase their role in decision-making process? Does it improve their public image tackling traditional gender stereotypes and the patriarchal mentalities of their communities? Does it mitigate the gap between the public and the private realm? Do gender relations change as a result of the women increasing role in household food security?

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2. RURAL SUDAN CONTEXT

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Sudan is located in northeastern Africa. Sudan, the largest and one of the most geographically diverse states in Africa, splits into two countries in July 2011 after the people of the south voted for independence (see Figure 1). In addition, the climate of Sudan is as diverse as its vegetation and geography. Sudan’s territory crosses over 18 degrees of latitude, which results in an extremely diverse environment ranging from arid desert in the north to tropical forests in the south. Sudan is one of the wealthiest countries in Africa and Arab World in terms of the natural resources (Ayoub, 1999) which need to be strategically and equitably allocated. The country is ethnically and culturally among the world most diverse, it comprises hundreds of distinct tribal and ethnic groups. The culture of the various ethnic groups to some extent reflects Arabic and African origins or mixture of both. Sudan has largely a rural economy. Agriculture remains an important sector of economy with about 70 percent of the labor force deriving its livelihood from agriculture and contribute a third of gross domestic product (GDP). The agricultural sector in Sudan is seen as the cornerstone in promoting economic growth and development in the pursuit of improving the food security of rural society. Agriculture provides 90% of the national food requirements. Agricultural production accounts for a large share of export revenue, and also it supplies nearly all raw materials for food processing, and plays a vital role in the national food security in Sudan (Mahran, 2005, p. 3). Many people in the developing world depend directly on agriculture as their primary source of food, and negative impacts on crop productivity will affect crop production and thereby overall food supply at the local level (Ingram, et al. 2008). Rural people livelihoods are based primary on food and cash crops cultivation, in addition to livestock herding, income activities and fishing, where available.

Figure 1 Sudan Map.

On the basis of the 5th Sudan’s Population Census in 2008, rural people in Sudan constitute 61.48% of the total population and nomad accounts of 9.02% (Central Bureau of Statistics, 2010). Sex ratio in rural areas is highly feminine compared to urban and nomadic Food Security: Quality Management, Issues and Economic Implications : Quality Management, Issues and Economic Implications, Nova Science

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populations. Note, generally sex ratio measures the proportion of males to females in a given population and it is usually measured as the number of males per 100 females. According to census data the sex ratio is 102 for the total population, 105 for the urban population and 120 for nomadic, whereas the rural population has a lower sex ratio of 98. This higher femininity ratio is primarily due to the outmigration of males from rural areas. It is abundantly clear from many bodies of the research in Sudan that it is primarily the males who immigrate from rural to urban areas (see for example Aldeshoni, 2005; Ibnouf, 2008; Karrar et al. 2006) as well in most developing countries (Agesa, 2004; Barrios, et al. 2006; De Brauw and Rozelle, 2008). Cultural factors may play a determinant role in males and females migration from rural areas. One of other explanations could be, depending on the nature of the job, men may be preferred to women such as temporary workers in mechanized agricultural schemes which favor male workers to female. Agesa and Agesa, (1999, p. 52) point-out the incidence of rural to urban migration is higher for males as a result of their greater gains to migration. However, the Sudan Census data show that there is substantial variation in sex ratio for the different age groups, where the sex ratio tends to reduce among the working ages (20 to 45) as there is an excess of females in rural Sudan. The sex ratio decreased from the average of 104 (for aged under 20) to average of 82 for the group aged 20 to 45 and high sex ratio of 124 was even recorded among the elderly (see Figure 2). So 2008 Census indicated that there were more women than men in the broad 20–45 years age group (economically active age group), and therefore the data suggest a strongly gendered migration flow in some age groups. Elsewhere in developing countries, the mobility of young males in search of opportunities in urban areas remains a constant feature of migration (Adepoju, 1995; Anríquez and Stloukal, 2008; de Jong, 2000; De Haan, 2002). Anríquez and Stloukal, (2008) state migration usually is ageselective and comprises mostly young adults who migrate to cities to seek urban employment. A high sex ratio of the age groups 60 and over could indicate returning of migrant men to their home villages after working for a period of time or after retirement. In conclusion, there is a gendered migration which affected the overall gender composition balance in the rural population. For whatever reason rural outmigration of the men occurs resulting in a feminization of the most rural Sudan. So a population distribution is manifested in a higher female proportion in the rural areas of Sudan. As a consequence women are currently a growing presence in the all economic activities of the rural areas. Historically, according to the Sudan labor force census for adults in 1955–1956, the percentage of rural women who practice agricultural work is 12.8 percent, while men account for 87.2 percent (Baderi, 2002, p. 74). However, since then, the contribution of rural women in the agricultural sector in Sudan in general is far greater. This is consistent with a relatively large body of literature, which suggests that from the early 1980s the Sudanese rural women's role in agricultural sector has increased significantly (Eltigani, 1995; A/Karim, 1996; Ali, 1997; Baderi, 2002). This has been the consequence of a number of phenomena. The first is drought, which has struck parts of Sudan, mainly eastern and western Sudan in the early of 1980s and 1990s. The second phenomenon is the civil war and tribal conflicts. The implementation of structural adjustment and market liberalization policies in the Sudan since the eighties of last century has led to escalating cost of living due to cut–backs in government subsidies and prices control. Along with these changes occurring in rural society, women's roles are changing in the food production sector and household food security. These changes due to such phenomena imply the need to give more attention to rural women who substitute males in food production sector and in turn in providing household food security.

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The nature and extent of women’s involvement in agricultural sector varies widely among different ecological zones and farming systems and from region to region in Sudan. Women’s contribution involve all farm production, but much higher in traditional farm production system. Rural women play a pivotal role in agricultural production in rain-fed farming systems in western and eastern Sudan. Women living in areas that have been or continue to be affected by drought and conflict – particularly in Darfur and Kordofan states – principally engaged in food production for household consumption. The statistical data indicated that the participation of females in the traditional rain-fed agricultural sector reaches 78 percent in the in rural areas of north Kordofan (Ibnouf, 2008) and in Nuba Mountains of South Kordofan (Alkareb, 2003) in addition to their role in backyard plot – a finding that seems consistent with the results in the literature across developing countries (Mukadasi and Nabalegwa, 2007; Scanlan, 2004). Rural women may share similar problems with men in many respects, however, they identified constraints and opportunities that would differ significantly from men and these were frequently attributed to gender within their culture. Additionally, rural women work in the food production sector continues to be undervaluing and it usually unrevealed in the formulation of national food security policies. A closer analysis of the composition of Sudan's population shows that the rate of growth of males, who economically active in agricultural sector was significantly slower than that of the females (0.24 and 0.14 for males and 0.26 and 0.24 for females, for the years 1971-1990 and 1991-1998, respectively (Guvele, et al. 2003, p. 11 – Figure 3). Census data does not reflect the women actual work in agriculture since it does not account for female unpaid family work in farm activities. This is resulting in a consistent of agricultural workforce and underestimate of proportion of females. Problems of conceptualization, definitions of terms, and procedures plague of national censuses data and statistics of labor force for both males and females. The 1993 Sudan Population Census estimated that only 24.7% of the female population was economically active compared to 71.3% economically active male population. Yet women in agricultural work are disproportionally undercounted even in the recent Sudan Population Census in 2008. The 2008 Census indicates that the majority of Sudanese men (48.13%) work in agricultural sector followed by services sector (35.9%). While women workforce in agricultural account for 49.48% followed by services sector 22.45%. The study by Arab Labor Organization (2007) concludes that women's work in agriculture activities is higher than men's work. According to Arab Labor Organization (2007) the employed Sudanese men constitute the majority of total employment in all sectors (76%), whereas employed Sudanese women constitute the minority of total employment in all sectors (24%). However, women constitute the majority (66%) of the agricultural sector workforce compared to their male counterparts (37%). While the majority of males are employed in the services sector (40%) and women account for 27% in services sector (ibid). Women are more concentrated in the low-paid informal sector. Nonetheless, rural women contribute far more to the agricultural production than has been generally recorded because the products of their labor are for the largest part intended for the household use and do not reach the market economy. There is gender division of labor traditionally in the rural areas. Although women responsibility in farm activity is on increase, however at the same time the biggest part of responsibilities in the household production activities are still on their “shoulders”. Domestic production activities involve maintenance of household and its members including food preparation, processing and preserving, water and fuel collection and caring for children and elderly and building of community network. Women's unpaid domestic production activities

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is generally not classified as being productive work and ignored in the national statistical accounts. Tasks labelled productive or unproductive depending upon whether they are performed in the capitalist workplace or in the home; since the home is not generally regarded as being a workplace tasks performed there are not regarded as being "real" work (Kynaston, 1996, p. 224). As a consequence, there is an underestimation of women's potential contribution to the household food security and nutrition.

Sources: data for this graph are derived from 5th Sudan’s Population Census 2008 Table 11.5 (Central Bureau of Statistics, 2010).

0.3 0.25 Growth Rate

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Figure 2. The rural Sudan population sex ratio.

0.24

0.26

0.24

0.2

0.14

0.15

Males

0.1

Females

0.05 0 1971-1990

1991-1998 Years

Source: data for this graph are derived from Guvele, et al. 2003, p. 11. Figure 3. The growth rate of males and females in agricultural sector for the years 1971-1990 and 19911998.

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3. RESEARCH METHODS

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The study draws on findings from field survey undertaken in rural areas of North Kordofan State of western Sudan. The research instruments used in the field survey were pretested structured questionnaire and observation. Informal interviews were also conducted with women in different parts of rural Sudan asking about types of indigenous foods developed by them. Informal interviews were considered to be the most effective means for stimulating open discussions about diets and food practices (women’s domain) and making known multiple realities of rural women. Relaxed discussions were expected to yield explicit aspects of indigenous knowledge and inherent capacities related to food processing and preservation practices. All interviews were recorded and written and further analysis was based on these notes taken. A number of secondary data sources were utilized in this study. First, to set the scene, some data from the 2008 Sudan’s Population Census are presented, followed by a brief comment about census account issues. Working papers and published and unpublished field surveys represent the other sources of the secondary data. The methodology of this study depends also on extensive use of a review of literature to provide a comprehensive overview of role of rural women in household food security. Several publications, illustrated with many case studies, have described the different roles that rural women have in achieving household food security. These sources also offered some benchmarks for comparison with the researcher acquired data. Quantitative data were analyzed using the Statistical Package for Social Sciences (SPSS 11.0® for Windows). Data were analyzed from a sample of 275 respondents (110 male and 165 female) from fifteen villages of North Kordofan State. Descriptive statistics were used to obtain percentages and frequencies. Qualitative information generated during the study was carefully reading as the whole material and then is summarized and presented as results.

4. THE PRODUCERS AND PROVIDERS OF HOUSEHOLD FOOD SECURITY Who are the principle producers of food in subsistence agriculture and providers of dayto-day family subsistence? To what extent rural men and women smooth food consumption over seasons (normal and lean seasons)? Which means are known to be most effective and efficiently to manage natural resources and to cope with rising complexity and climateinduced crises and stresses? Answering these questions not only sheds light on the ability of rural men and women to cope with food crisis and recover from climate change impacts, but also leads to a better understanding of role that man or woman plays in providing sufficient, safe and nutritious food supplies to household. A greater understanding of the role of traditional practices (which may include post harvesting activities) to ensure the sustainable, safe use of agricultural and animal resources – is necessary for the food security and ultimately to the underlying values of rural communities. Men and women use a variety of coping strategies to deal with and manage the crises associated with food production. Thus rural men and women play diverse role in household food security through their different tasks in food production and provision as follow:

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4.1. Gender Division of Labor in Rural Areas Gender roles are roles that are played by both women and men and which are not determined by biological factors but by the socioeconomic and cultural environment or situation (Mollel and Mtenga, 2000). Gender plays a role in all food production and provision activities as gender relations and identities are part of the Sudanese social and cultural structures. Social structures assign power to women and men through their access and control of live-based productive resources. The ability of women and men to produce, provide, distribute, control, and consume food can be understood as an indicator of their power within family and the society. This ability depends on their socio-economic and cultural structures and the structure of family organizations and social practices. In Sudan, the subsistence activities on which the lives of most rural people depend are oriented around farm and livestock activities, post–harvest activities, and income generating activities. In this regard, there are gender-related cultural practices at home, on farm, and in the community life at large. While men dominate cash crop production, because they tend to govern the more remunerative activities in agriculture. However, rural women play a pivotal role in food production sector and are usually responsible for the food crops destined for consumption by the household. Women have their social support networks which are dynamic components of food security in rural Sudan. Notwithstanding in rural areas of Sudan men are traditionally perception as primary breadwinners and food providers and women as dependents. Role of rural women are usually respond to evolving circumstances and thus, gender division of labor is changing accordingly. Hence, women do most of the agricultural activities and have had to take on men's breadwinner responsibilities. Women play roles in their household food security from production to consumption (Ejembi, et al., 2006, p. 63). However, despite these changing women's status, to some extent, is governed by culture and norms. In Sudanese culture some food-related activities, practices, or actions are gender specific. Despite increasing of their role in agriculture, women still perform the gendered domestic activities such as raising smaller livestock, collecting wild food, gardening backyard plot, processing and preserving of food products, and they are responsible for supplying of water and firewood. It does not appear that men are undertaken any of women’s production activities, either in farm or home.

4.2. Gender Role in Food Production The results of survey in rural North Kordofan show that women work significantly more hours than men due to their multiple roles in family farm, home gardening, food preparation, post–harvest activities and income activities (see Table 1). This finding is consistent with the study conducted by Alkareb (2003) in the traditional rain–fed farming of Nuba Mountain of South Kordofan State, estimated that the workday of a woman agricultural laborer during the agricultural season 8 to 10 hours, while her male counterpart works for only seven to eight hours and the remaining contribution comes from children. These differences suggest an important difference for how work is distributed by gender in the rural area context. Women are responsible for the more time-consuming and labor-intensive tasks of farm activities, homestead gardening, food preparation, and household chores. Some case studies from developing countries indicate that women spend significantly more time than men in domestic

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production activities (Engle, et al. 1999, p. 1318). From my observation in different parts of rural Sudan women are usually started their day at 6 o’clock in the morning – working between farm and home till sunset at 6 o’clock in the evening – so with this an overloaded schedule no time left for rest during daylight. Hence, this finding consistent of literature of gender division of domestic labor that woman still performs the gendered domestic activities that socially constructed and not sexually determined. Results of this study indicate that cooking is regard as 'female duty’ in rural surveyed areas; none of the men of surveyed sample (0%) were involved in food cooking. Cooking is one of the main daily activities which consume considerable amount of times. Particularly in some parts of rural Sudan women usually use firewood and crop residues for cooking. Women face double work load due to challenges that come with climate change causing them take longer to access basic facilities they require for their daily needs, i.e. water and firewood. Water collection is time consuming tasks and absorbs a considerable amount of women time daily. There has a chronic water shortage problem throughout almost most rural areas that depend on surface sources and the situation is critical when there is low rainfall during the rainy season. This make women walk long distances and spend hours searching for clean water sources and then carrying it in large containers on their heads. Study by Alston (2007) confirms this result and indicates that the impacts of reduced availability of water for irrigation, for cooking, and for drinking are significantly gendered as they impact differentially on rural men's and women's time use. Therefore, the results of this study contribute to the literature that calculation of women's unpaid work if properly valued would lead to a fundamental change in the context that they would emerge in rural Sudan as the main food producer and provider given their greater contribution of working hours compared with men. Table 1. ANOVA on the number of working hours of male and female respondents Copyright © 2012. Nova Science Publishers, Incorporated. All rights reserved.

ANOVA Variable Sex Between Groups Within Groups Total

Sum of Squares 8.993 57.007 66.000

df 3 271 274

Mean Square 2.998 .210

F 14.251

Sig. .000

Data for this table is derived from the researcher field Survey in North Kordofan State of western Sudan.

The long dry season in North Kordofan causes a real pressure on rural women (and their female children) charged with fetching water for both human and animal consumption because this task is cumbersome. Women interviewed indicate that they make at least two trips daily to the well or hafier and bring containers full of water on her head and hands in each trip (see Figure 4). Note: hafier (large earth embankments) is indigenous technique of water harvesting in western Sudan (see Figure 5).

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Figure 4. Women carrying water on their head.

Figure 5. Hafier.

Indicate by most interviewed women that introduction of simple, relatively low cost, and easy operation the energy-efficient cooking stoves help in shortening the process of food cooking and reducing the need for daily firewood collection. Construction of pump-well or borehole water in some villages assists according to respondents in shortening the water collection time. The time of water and firewood collection has been reduced to half its original amount required for these daily activities at some villages and even to one quarter at others as indicated by women surveyed. Women confirm that construction of pump-well also allow them to pull up water as needed so it eliminates the need for water storage and for carrying the heavy load on their head. A majority of women interviewed in such rural areas indicate that they are usually using their time saved, drudgery reduced from fetching water and collecting firewood for cultivating vegetables in backyard plot for sale and/or for involvement in income activities.

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4.3. Male’s and Female’s Coping and Risk-Reduction Strategies In most rural Sudan there is a decline in the food supply from households’ own production as the result of the recurrent droughts, desertification, and in addition consequent tribal strife. Developing economies are particularly sensitive to the direct impacts of climate change given their often heavy dependence on agriculture and ecosystems (Ingram, et al. 2008). In addition, people in rural Sudan indicate that they experience periods of food shortages caused by crop failure, livestock loss, and also due to shortfalls caused by lack of income. Therefore, in rural areas, in the face of increasing livelihood insecurity, people are tending to diversify their activities for sustainability of their livelihood and to cope with the times of stress. The household’s primary objective is to secure a minimum level of consumption by developing efficient risk-management and risk-coping strategies (Nguyen, 1998, p. 199). Rural people have been found to respond to natural hazards and other socioeconomic problems by developing a variety of risk-reduction and coping strategies. According to (Asfaw and Von Braum, 2004) rural households use several coping strategies, such as informal insurance through social networks, the reorganization of household units, temporary migration, and the depletion of assets to purchase food. These adaptation strategies and managing activities are characterized by innovation and experimentation, both in the use of natural resources and in sustaining household food supplies. It is often the result of long experiences as indicated by surveyed people elsewhere in rural Sudan. In actual fact traditional coping strategies can be regarded as the crux of the matter in helping those rural people to survival. Most of the agriculture farming systems in Sudan are rain-fed, crop production is thus highly vulnerable to the declining and vagaries of the rainfall. Numerous different indigenous techniques, from conservation of water to traditional cultivation mechanisms are viewed as unique adaptation techniques to environmental hazards in rural Sudan. These coping and riskreduction strategies reflect understanding of local people to climate change and problems associated with food production. Therefore they recognize the potential ways to deal with it and they have ability to recover from its consequences. Rural people in eastern Sudan are used various indigenous techniques for crop production, such as valley-bottom and floodrecession cultivation, gravity irrigation and indigenous soil and water conservation (Van Dijk, 1997). In eastern Sudan people are employed also a number of indigenous water conservation techniques based on their indigenous knowledge, such as the application of brushwood panels and earth bunds for rainwater harvesting and teras (bounded landholding) is the most elaborate indigenous technique for soil and water conservation which uses earth bunds to harvest rainwater from small catchments (ibid). Indigenous knowledge plays a critical role in ensuring survival of people who living in the conflict-affected rural areas of western Sudan – Darfur and Kordofan (Muhammad, 2002). The current study indicate that men and women use a variety of risk-reduction and coping strategies to cope with and recover from such problems associated with crop production based on their indigenous knowledge and its associated practices. Both rural men and women have knowledge of what varieties can be grown, in what season, and in what soil conditions. The sand content of the soil is high in North Kordofan of western Sudan, people indicate that they select the range of crop varieties accordingly – usually drought-resistant crop varieties such as groundnut, millet, sorghum, sesame, and hibiscus. Although previous research (Van Dijk, 1997; Muhammad, 2002) has helped in understanding these coping processes, questions

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remain about gender differences in coping and the nature of the relationship between coping strategies and ability to sustain household food supplies. Men and women use a variety of coping strategies to bridge food gaps and sustain household food supplies. The adaptive capacity of people depends on how they can draw from resources to maximize livelihood outcomes (Masika, 2002). In this regard, the impacts of the aforementioned crises (natural hazards, crop failure, livestock loss, etc) are represented ‘push factors’ for women to fulfill their responsibilities as food providers. Indicate by this study that rural women used proportionately greater varieties of coping strategies than men. Similar results confirmed by Oldewage–Theron, et al. (2006, p. 802) in their study of Vaal Triangle in South Africa show that females were more responsible than males for employing various strategies to overcome food insufficiency in the households. Indicate by women in surveyed villages that they tend to confront the problems and accepting responsibility (which include adjusting food consumption, gardening backyard plot, collecting forest trees and wild foods, processing and storage of foods, seeking social support, etc) whereas most men used to escape the situation (out-migration). Much of the development literature documented that in many developing countries, including Sudan, men, during a crisis like drought, escape the situation and leave women to feed household members (see for example Khider and Bashir, 1992; Maxwell and Frankenberger, 1992; Chambers and Momsen, 2007). Figure 6 summarizes the number of adaptive (short-term) and survival strategies (long-term) developed by men and women in the study area that are based on their indigenous knowledge (IK) to secure sustainable food for their household. Rural women roles and responsibilities are energetic and they usually respond to evolving circumstances and to changing climatic and socio-economic conditions through diversification of the strategies to cope with such crises. Diversification has become an important part of the livelihood paradigm and it may occur both as a long-term livelihood strategy and as a short-term response to a crisis (Ellis, 1998). Indicate by women respondents that coping with an immediate decline in access to foods achieved by adjusting household consumption pattern (decrease quantity or quality of food). Modest dietary adjustments (such as eating less–preferred foods or reducing portion size) are highly reversible strategies that do not jeopardize household assets (Maxwell, et al. 2008, p. 534). In general, this study argues that in rural women are more likely than men to use locally available resources effectively to diverse their livelihood strategies. The highly diverse livelihood systems through complementary between subsistence farming activities and a variety of coping strategies improve the potential for sustainable household food security. The women’s activities, their skills, and knowledge to grow, collect, and prepare food are essential to secure the livelihood of the family (Kevane 2004). For Maxwell (1996, p. 164) the diversification of rural livelihood opportunities provides a more sustainable means of achieving household food security. Among household members of respondents almost all households have member(s) who are migrant workers. Out-migration in search of better opportunities has long been one of the regular strategies for the livelihood systems of males in rural Sudan (see Eltigani, 1995). There are many types of migration including return, repeat, circular, permanent, and temporary migration (De Sherbinin et al. 2008, p. 45). The respondents reported that they have at least one migrant male member (either permanent migrants 35.2% or seasonal migrants 52.1%) living and working elsewhere (in urban areas, big mechanized schemes or employed abroad). Seasonal migrants usually return to the area during the agricultural season.

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The finding is consistent with a case study research conducted by Tacoli (2002) suggests that between 50-60% of people living in rural Tanzanian households have at least one member away, while the figure for rural Mali was 80%. Among the surveyed sample 41.8% of males are returned migrants (over 50 years old). Compared to female respondent significantly larger proportion of males of the sample surveyed was in aged-group over 50 (p