Food security and monitoring systems
This chapter’s objectives are to define food security and describe how food security crises are identified and anticipated. Trends in food production and food security are discussed at the community, national and international scales. A conceptual framework is provided that links climate and economic shocks to income and food consumption, providing ways that food security can be monitored. Income and entitlements play a central role in the development of and response to food security crises. Then the chapter describes USAID’s Famine Early Warning Systems Network and how it monitors food security through the use of information and analysis on agricultural activity, the price of food and international trade is provided, along with an example from Niger. A description of the datasets that are needed to understand food security is provided and along with an assessment of how food prices fit into the analysis. Finally, the last section provides a critique on the connection between early warning and early action.