Study looks into coping strategies for food security during pandemic

THE town of Los Baños in Laguna province will be the site of a two-country study on coping strategies to ensure food security among urban households during the Covid-19 pandemic.

The study is jointly implemented by the Southeast Asian Regional Center for Graduate Study and Research in Agriculture (SEARCA) and its Indonesia-based sister centers under the Southeast Asian Ministers of Education Organization (Seameo).

While SEARCA is conducting the study in the Philippines, the Seameo Regional Center for Food and Nutrition and Seameo Regional Center for Tropical Biology will implement the study in two cities in Indonesia.

Dr. Pedcris Orencio, SEARCA program head for Research and Thought Leadership, said SEARCA will attempt to enhance the understanding of the experiences of Los Baños communities in coping with food security issues and concerns during the pandemic by generating policy recommendations.

He also explained that the study intends to determine the status of food security and identify the key determinants of households in Los Baños as well as the range and most common coping strategies adopted and social aids sought and received from government institutions.

Moreover, Orencio said the study will identify which components are most challenging among the households and generate policy recommendations on addressing food security during the Covid-19 pandemic.

On July 12, SEARCA met with the Municipal Planning and Development Office (MPDO) and the Municipal Action Nutrition Office (MANO) of Los Baños to discuss the study.

According to SEARCA, household interviews will be administered in 10 villages in Los Baños that will be selected based on the consultations conducted with the MPDO and MANO from July 25 to 29, 2022.

Orencio said the interviews will be undertaken by the SEARCA Research and Thought Leadership Department which he leads and coordinated by program specialist Anna Gale Vallez and program associate Donna Bae Malayang.

He said there will be student interns from the University of the Philippines Los Baños-College of Economics and Management involved in the study.

They will be profiling the target villages, collecting data and analyzing survey results, Orencio added.