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Exploration of food-seeking behaviour, food preparation, and restrictions to sufficient food among the Jahai sub-tribe (indigenous people) in Gerik, Malaysia


Citation

Gan, Wan Ying and Sulaiman, Norhasmah and Law, Leh Shii and Zalbahar @ Zabaha, Nurzalinda and Ahmad Fuzi, Salma Faeza and Wilkes, Martin A. (2020) Exploration of food-seeking behaviour, food preparation, and restrictions to sufficient food among the Jahai sub-tribe (indigenous people) in Gerik, Malaysia. International Journal of Environmental Research and Public Health, 17 (1). art. no. 348. pp. 1-12. ISSN 1661-7827; ESSN: 1660-4601

Abstract

Access to food has been determined to be a factor that strongly influences the dietary intake and eating habit of indigenous people (Orang Asli, OA). This study explored food acquisition and the barriers in obtaining traditional and market foods among the Jahai subtribe (within the Negrito ethnic group) via a qualitative approach. Twenty-eight OA (14 males and 14 females) from Gerik, Perak, Malaysia participated in four focus group discussions (FGDs; two male-only and two female-only groups; seven informants in each FGD). Thematic analysis was adopted to analyse the gathered data. The results found that the Jahai applied both modern (buying and receiving food assistance) and traditional (gathering, farming, fishing, and hunting) methods in obtaining food. The barriers they faced in gathering sufficient food supply included low purchasing power, high demand for food, high transport costs, depletion of food supplies in their surroundings, threats from wild animals on the farm and during food searching activities, and food sharing. Food preparation methods practiced by the OA include roasting and grilling, frying, simmering (gulai), and boiling. In conclusion, this study enhances our understanding of the dietary behaviour of the Jahai subtribe and highlights restricted food access among the OA, which demands urgent attention.


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Additional Metadata

Item Type: Article
Divisions: Faculty of Medicine and Health Science
DOI Number: https://doi.org/10.3390/ijerph17010348
Publisher: MDPI
Keywords: Food access; Household food security; Indigenous peoples; Eating behaviours; Barriers to food supply; Focus group discussion
Depositing User: Nabilah Mustapa
Date Deposited: 03 May 2020 23:04
Last Modified: 03 May 2020 23:04
Altmetrics: http://www.altmetric.com/details.php?domain=psasir.upm.edu.my&doi=10.3390/ijerph17010348
URI: http://psasir.upm.edu.my/id/eprint/38181
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