The food market in Ethiopia has recently been marked by uncharacteristically high prices, a situation that has paralleled conditions in the rest of the world. The causes of escalating food prices in Ethiopia are somewhat specific to it. These include high inflation levels and stagnating food production and supply in relation to increasing demand due to population growth and possibly rising incomes among certain sections of the population.
Although high food prices may have raised the incomes of some food producers in the country, they have exacerbated food shortages among food-deficit rural residents as well as urban dwellers that are fully dependent on the market for their food supply. Food insecurity has been extreme especially among the urban poor. This study defines food insecurity as a condition in which people lack the food intake they need to lead fully healthy and productive lives. Food insecurity is commonly conceptualized as chronic or transitory. This study focuses on chronic food insecurity which it shows is currently prevalent among the urban poor. The study aims to provide insight into the state, impact and causes of food insecurity and responses to it among the urban poor in Addis Ababa. It does so through a case study of Lideta sub-city consisting of a detailed qualitative description of current experiences of food insecurity.
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