In as a vulnerable point of national security;

In the past, Indonesian people consume diverse type of staple food such as rice, cassava, corn, sago etc. Different area consume different type of staple food, for example, people who live in Java consume rice while people in Papua and Nusa Tenggara prefer sago and corn as their main staple food (Widyanti, Sunaryo,& Kumalasari, 2014). However, Nuryazidi (2014) stated that the rice policy establish during three decades of Soeharto administration has resulted in the change of staple food consumption pattern. Indonesia people have shifted their main staple food, from consuming wide variety of staple food such as cassava, sago, maize etc into only consuming rice as their main staple food. According to Indonesia Statistical Bureau (2017), in 2017, with 262 million population, the average of rice consumption reached 114,6 kg/capita/year. This indicate that Indonesia is a huge rice consumer.

According to Hariyadi (as cited in Widyanti et al, 2014), high dependency on rice as a staple food has several negative effects: first, it could be a constraint for the development of local food resources which gave implications on less research investment into non-rice-based foods;  second, obtaining food security with one or two food items can be viewed as a vulnerable point of national security; third, other kinds of food need to be promoted as staple food because rice supplies are likely to be decreasing from time to time.

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Nuryazidi (2014) stated that Food diversification is important not only to enhance and sustain food security but also has a significant role in maintaining price stability.  Furthermore, he argued that the diversification of food gives more options to people so that when there is disruption or scarcity in certain types of staple foods, people can turn to other foods. 

Bustanul Arifin,  (as stated in Prasetyo, 2017) suggest there is a misconception that rice has to be eaten every day, even if alternatives such as bread, corn, cassava or potatoes are readily available. Moreover, Arifin also stated that eating rice is also seen as a status symbol, while cassava is generally associated with poverty. Thus, changing staple food choice from rice to other alternative staple food may be quite difficult. That is why, an insight into the perceptions of local people toward alternative staple food is needed in order to develop an effective policy to change the attitude of local people toward alternative staple food.


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