One in four struggles to eat regularly
As the cost of living rises, rents increase, and wages stagnant, in-work poverty is at an all-time high. This has led to a food poverty crisis in the UK.
- One in four low-income families can’t afford to eat regularly.
- More than eight million people live in food-insecure households.
- 1,182,954 emergency food packages were distributed by just one food bank charity alone last year.
Describing what it is like to go without food, Kathleen Kerridge, an author who has experienced food poverty, said: “Parents will lie, talking over the sound of rumbling stomachs, and say they’ve eaten, and that they couldn’t eat another mouthful.
“They’ll fill up on water, marked-down bread, and try to figure out how to pay rent, council tax, add electricity on to a meter that’s slowly bleeding them dry, find cash for gas, replace the shoes that have finally given up the ghost and arrived home with their child, missing a thin, worn-through sole.”
According to Trussell Trust, who handed out 1,182,954 emergency food packages last year, UK food bank use continues to rise. Additionally in areas where Universal Credit has been fully implemented, the use of foodbanks has risen by 16.85%.
Low income, benefit delays, welfare changes, debt, and ill health are some of the major causes of food poverty.
The problem of food poverty is exacerbated by the issues of food waste. Campaigns like Feed the 5000 shine a light on the issues stemming from surplus food ending up in landfill sites.
Turn2us is committed to tackling the symptoms and the causes of UK poverty. There are a number of benefits, tax credits and grants available to help.
In addition to free school meals and Healthy Start Food Vouchers, you may also be entitled to further benefits. Click here to use the benefits calculator to see what you are entitled to.