Hidden hunger: understanding dietary adequacy in urban and rural food consumption in Senegal

Using household consumption data collected in 2017/18, this paper analyzes patterns of urban and rural food consumption in Senegal. It adopt two methodological approaches. The first is an in-depth (spatial) analysis of current diets and corresponding nutrient intakes, coupled with an identification of possible food items to address nutrient gaps. The second approach is an application of the Quadratic Almost Ideal Demand System (QUAIDS) model to examine food consumption dynamics of Senegalese households. Results show that Senegal is a typical case of micronutrient deficiency, especially regarding calcium, iron and vitamin B12. Reflected by their more diversified diet, nutrient intake of urban dwellers is generally better compared to their rural counterparts, which relates to the urban sector’s higher income status and more secure access to food items, especially those rich in calcium, vitamin B12 and vitamin A. In contrast, the dietary status of rural populations is usually poorer and mainly driven by the nutrient content of cereals locally produced. Despite insufficient domestic production, the recent promotion and upsurge of small (local) cereal processing units might be a promising development to increase urban uptakes of iron.