Department of Geography
Master project

Food insecurity during the lean season

My master project study focuses on food insecurity in smallholder farmers household during the Lean season in the Guinea Savanna zone of Ghana with Navrongo as the study area.

Barn for food storage in Doba.
Barn for food storage in Doba.
Samuel Amakye

Main content

In Ghana, smallholder farmers constitute the majority of food producers, yet still, they are the most vulnerable when it comes to food insecurity. Although food insecurity persists in most of these households throughout the year, the situation, however, becomes devastating during the lean season. Lean season in this context is the period between household food stock depletion and the next harvest.

Many factors might have accounted for this situation, notable among is the rainfall pattern in the area which allows for only one season farming. Households have to live on harvest from one season until the other harvest. In the midst of all the difficulties, smallholder households devised different strategies to sustain themselves.

Using the concept of food security, food insecurity and the sustainable livelihood approach, this study seeks to find out, among other things the perceptions and experiences of smallholder farmer households on food insecurity during the lean season, strategies employ and how such strategies impact on the food situation in the household.

Fieldwork experiences

My fieldwork was very interesting and an adventure. Interesting because it gave me the opportunity to interact with people from different culture background but faces similar challenges. Adventure because I got to know different communities and also observed many landforms en route to the study area.

Using qualitative research methods such as participant observation, in-depth interviews, and informal discussion, I attained more insight into the challenges that face smallholder farmers' household during the lean season.The interviews also helped me to identify some of the contemporary coping and adaptive strategies households are adopting in this age of climate change.

Studying geography in Bergen

Bergen is a spectacular city with beautiful landforms that provides an incentive for the study of Geography. Not only Bergen is spectacular, the University of Bergen also provides quality courses that prepare one in all aspect to face the challenges of the world. Indeed, the experience of lecturers and the practical process that are attached to lecturing has equipped me to organize my thoughts, as well as broadening my understanding of issues.

To students who want to pursue their master studies, I must say the university of Bergen is one of the best places that you should consider because all the educational facilities that will help you to scale-up your knowlegde as an individual in other to become a good academician is available here.


Peter Andersen