Food Supply and Urban-Rural Links in Southern African Cities
This chapter examines the transfers of food between households as part of the bundle of food security strategies used by food-poor households in Southern African cities. The empirical evidence is drawn from the 11-city household survey undertaken by the African Food Security Urban Network (AFSUN). The chapter finds that informal rural–urban links help to reduce the food gap for poor, chronically food insecure households in Southern African cities. In addition to demonstrating strong food ties between rural and urban households, the data also reveal that food insecure households living in different cities transfer food. Based on these findings, this chapter outlines why dealing with food and nutrition security is a priority and multi-faceted urban development challenge, and argues for development policy and planning that seeks to enhance these widely prevalent household linkages by supporting urban (and rural) livelihoods.