Why gender matters for food safety
In this blog post, Sophie Theis (Research Analyst, Poverty, Health, Nutrition Division, International Food Policy Research Institute) and Delia Grace (Program Manager, International Livestock Research Institute) relate findings from a recent A4NH/International Livestock Research Institute analysis of 20 livestock and fish value chains in Africa and Asia that reveal how gender differences in value chain participation influence risk exposure. The findings from the analysis of these value chains indicate that differences in risk exposure between men and women derive primarily from gender-based differences in occupational exposure, and secondarily, to differences in patterns and practices of the food consumed. Biological differences between men and women were less important determinants of health risk; but can be important for some value chains and diseases. Attention to the influence of gender on risk exposure and risk management along the value chain is critical for improving food safety and managing health risks in informal markets.