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Do we actually need food banks in Britain?

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 ThunderCat 11 May 2022

Problem solved,

"Tory MP Lee Anderson says no massive need for food banks in UK, and real problem people not being able to cook properly.  In his contribution to the Queen’s speech debate the Conservative MP Lee Anderson said that a food bank in his Ashfield constituency operated a “brilliant scheme” whereby people accepting a donation had to register for a budgeting course and a cooking course. He went on:

We show them how to cook cheap and nutritious meals on a budget. We can make a meal for about 30p a day, and this is cooking from scratch."

https://www.theguardian.com/politics/live/2022/may/11/boris-johnson-michael-gove-tories-cost-of-living-latest-updates

I've double checked, and it's definitely not a Brass Eye script

5
 Tony Buckley 11 May 2022
In reply to ThunderCat:

Do we need Lee Anderson in Britain?

T.

7
 hang_about 11 May 2022
In reply to Tony Buckley:

Interesting. I looked at the price of cheap white rice - 45 p for 1 kg.

Energy content is 130 cal per 100 g with a recommended calorific intake for a man of 2500 cal

So this roughly equates to 2 kg of rice = 90p.

Of course, you've got to cook it (energy costs) on a cooker (which you have to pay for) in a home (that you have to pay for). So I'd be very interested to see how one can get this calorific intake for 40 p a day. The boredom would be incredible and you'd end up will all sorts of nutrient and vitamin deficiencies, but hey ho - they know better.

11
In reply to ThunderCat:

The courses are a good idea.

The MP opening his mouth and saying that this means food banks are unnecessary was not a good idea.

Should have said that this is a great way of helping people so that they don't need to rely on food banks so often/much.

If after loads of people have been supported and given new skills the food bank is no longer necessary then that's a bonus (although unlikely IMO).

But mentioning it now makes it sound like the objective is getting rid of food banks, when the objective should always be helping people.

5
 The Norris 11 May 2022
In reply to hang_about:

> Interesting. I looked at the price of cheap white rice - 45 p for 1 kg.

> Energy content is 130 cal per 100 g with a recommended calorific intake for a man of 2500 cal

> So this roughly equates to 2 kg of rice = 90p.

> Of course, you've got to cook it (energy costs) on a cooker (which you have to pay for) in a home (that you have to pay for). So I'd be very interested to see how one can get this calorific intake for 40 p a day. The boredom would be incredible and you'd end up will all sorts of nutrient and vitamin deficiencies, but hey ho - they know better.

Perhaps he was using the Eric Pickles cookbook and cooked it in 200 grams of lard?

2
 Andy Hardy 11 May 2022
In reply to ThunderCat:

The next iteration of welfare reforms will see the return of the poor laws and workhouses, if this bunch have anything to do with it.

11
In reply to ThunderCat:

Schools could offer cooking lessons but it would be at the expense of climbing coaching and so unpopular.  

Post edited at 18:41
1
 RobAJones 11 May 2022
In reply to Presley Whippet:

> Schools could offer cooking lessons 

For the kids, parents or staff? 

4
In reply to ThunderCat:

Some food banks and community projects have been doing cookery and budgetting for ages. Purely because these are good skills to help improve lives. But he is a total dick , 30p my arse. I’ve also tried checking which food banks he is referring to but can’t find it. I note he uses the word ‘we’ a lot so guess he must volunteer there. Unless of course he is a lying fecker. 

1
In reply to Bottom Clinger:

To be fair, just cooked this meal in the photo for about 30p, so you could eat this three times a day. 


 JLS 11 May 2022
In reply to Bottom Clinger:

Only 30p and only 30 calories! Good for both waist and wallet. Win, win. What’s not to like?

2
In reply to JLS:

And for the cost of a couple of quid, a length of garden hose shoved up your arse and then connected to your gas central heating could heat your house, thus eliminating fuel poverty. Win Win Win. 

5
In reply to ThunderCat:

This prison food budget is £2.02 a day, so I'd guess that is close to the minimum possible.

1
In reply to hang_about:

> Energy content is 130 cal per 100 g

Rice is mostly carbs and a bit of protein, tiny bit of fat, so I'd expect nearly 400kcal/100g. I think your figure is for cooked rice. Google concurs, with figures suggesting 355kcal/100g dry, uncooked rice.

So 2500kcal requires 700g of dry rice. So 30p of rice. For the more sedentary target of 2000kcal, 24p.

None of which makes this scumbag's comments any more acceptable. Food banks aren't providing take away foods. They're providing staples. Like rice.

Showing people how to cook cheap meals is a great idea. I don't see how it eliminates the need for food banks. Pay to view TV, media streaming, expensive mobile phone contracts, etc; yes, they ought to go first. But that will affect the economy, too. It's hardly something to be crowing about, that standard of living, and disposable income is shrinking (for the vast majority, that is).

2
 Duncan Bourne 11 May 2022
In reply to hang_about:

Ah but you are missing out foraging wild herbs and Ducks off the local lake and rumaging through bins behind Tescos.

We are also eyeing the local dogs up with interest

5
In reply to Presley Whippet:

They do! Home Economics. Used to love it when my cousin had home ec day. Year 7 seemed to consist of cakes and flapjacks!

 Albert Tatlock 11 May 2022
In reply to ThunderCat:

Mrs Tatlock works in  a deprived inner city primary school in NW England, during  the Marcus Rashford  free school meals episode for deprived undernourished children during school holidays.

During the school holidays her primary school had  51 children who were entitled to free school dinners. 

Teaching & Council staff organised a combination of sandwich type food as well as food which needed some minor preparation and cooking, there was additional food to feed extra family members. 

11 families came to collect the food, the feedback from the families that didn’t collect the free food distribution was they need microwave / ready meal type food. 

Not sure what the what the way forward is for some of these families is , but support, mentoring , education around budgeting / planning food / cooking basic / value meals & financial planing  is the way forward.

Just an observation.

 profitofdoom 11 May 2022
In reply to ThunderCat:

> Problem solved, > "Tory MP Lee Anderson says no massive need for food banks in UK.......

What a b*stard

I hope the day comes when the privileged entitled b*stard needs a food bank himself and can glimpse the issue from the other side of the fence

FWIW I have needed, and have used, a food bank in my life

5
 RobAJones 11 May 2022
In reply to Albert Tatlock:

> 11 families came to collect the food, the feedback from the families that didn’t collect the free food distribution was they need microwave / ready meal type food. 

At  a similar time I remember listening to someone (Liverpool area? ) who questioned the way some food banks operated. Basically his concern was that at times it resulted in an odd mixture of "ingredients" and that many didn't have the means to cook them at home. His approach was to supply them with a slow cooker and then basically provide them with a meal, that they made from scratch, that could then be put in it and warmed up. 

> Not sure what the what the way forward is for some of these families is , but support, mentoring , education around budgeting / planning food / cooking basic / value meals & financial planing  is the way forward.

I agree for many/most it is, but when I look it up about 5% of women can't or won't cook. Perhaps 1% have staff to do it for them? When I think about the bottom 4% of kids many will still need support as adults. 

2
 RobAJones 11 May 2022
In reply to profitofdoom:

> FWIW I have needed, and have used, a food bank in my life

I expect the number of people who have at sometime is quite surprising. I know of two teachers who have and as it isn't the sort of thing people broadcast I expect there are others I don't know about. It didnt take much, kids, divorce, partner not paying maintenance, trying to keep up the mortgage payments on one wage. 

1
In reply to Albert Tatlock:

Sure Start centres played a key role in education, cooking skills etc,, but since 2010 they lost two thirds of their funding resulting in 500 closing in areas that needed them most. 

 morpcat 11 May 2022
In reply to Presley Whippet:

> Schools could offer cooking lessons but it would be at the expense of climbing coaching and so unpopular.  

I disagree with you in the other thread, but this made me chuckle. Nicely done

 hang_about 11 May 2022
In reply to captain paranoia:

Fair enough. Still shows a rather unbelievable lack of sensitivity, knowledge or compassion

In reply to morpcat:

Thanks, it illustrates my point nicely. There are essentials and there are nice to haves.

Food trumps climbing. 

In reply to hang_about:

> Still shows a rather unbelievable lack of sensitivity, knowledge or compassion

As I said:

"None of which makes this scumbag's comments any more acceptable."

2
 JLS 11 May 2022
In reply to Bottom Clinger:

Back in the good old days of Thatcher, we’d have 2oz of lard for breakfast and a custard cream for our tea. If you every felt like you needed a bit of protein, well, there were always cockroaches in the kitchen and earth worms in the garden. Licking the damp off the walls was the closest we ever got to gravy.

Young people today, with all their food banks and soft Tories, don’t know they are born…

Post edited at 23:02
6
 birdie num num 11 May 2022
In reply to ThunderCat:

If you buy Ko Lee instant noodles and learn how to cook them, you can feed a family of five for seven pounds a week 

2
 NathanP 12 May 2022
In reply to Duncan Bourne:

> Ah but you are missing out foraging wild herbs and Ducks off the local lake and rumaging through bins behind Tescos.

But surely everybody can just harvest the ducks from the expenses-funded duck house in their moats?

 Steve Crossley 12 May 2022
In reply to Albert Tatlock:

>

> 11 families came to collect the food, the feedback from the families that didn’t collect the free food distribution was they need microwave / ready meal type food. 

>

I wonder why? Do some families not have cookers? A microwave can be bought for (quick google time), £55.00, whereas a cooker, much lower than I thought £170.00, but still a lot more than a Microwave.
Is it possible people in the direst need, do not even have a cooker.

I too have no idea of the way forward.

In reply to RobAJones:

> I agree for many/most it is, but when I look it up about 5% of women can't or won't cook

Is cooking still "woman's work", then...?

 RobAJones 12 May 2022
In reply to captain paranoia

> Is cooking still "woman's work", then...?

Hopefully not, but as the same survey said 16% of men can't cook there is still a discrepancy. Interestingly there is very little variation in age category.

I was actually thinking from  a child's perspective of having at least one parent who could cook. 

1
 NorthernGrit 12 May 2022
In reply to MG:

> This prison food budget is £2.02 a day, so I'd guess that is close to the minimum possible.

Except even then you've got economy of scale catering for large numbers rather than a small family.

 toad 12 May 2022
In reply to ThunderCat:

Jack Monroe has said it best, I'll let you seek out her quote, it's a bit sweary...

Incidentally, I've seen tory activists tweeting  something similar. I fear this is is the new tory policy line- its your fault you can't make do with the scraps we offer

Post edited at 09:37
2
In reply to NorthernGrit:

That's true, although you also have to pay someone to produce it, which probably balances out.

 jkarran 12 May 2022
In reply to Albert Tatlock:

> 11 families came to collect the food, the feedback from the families that didn’t collect the free food distribution was they need microwave / ready meal type food. 

> Not sure what the what the way forward is for some of these families is , but support, mentoring , education around budgeting / planning food / cooking basic / value meals & financial planing  is the way forward.

For lots of families in shit rentals/B&B or worse having working cooking facilities beyond a microwave & kettle will be an issue, it's not all skills. Cooking in a home requires some facilities, for those of us used to doing it on a campsite those can seem pretty minimal but they still cost something and the key to success is in starting well prepared (herbs, spices, oils, tools etc). Also you still need to be able to wash up, you can't take it all home to the dishwasher. I cooked for years at home on a single camping gas ring while I didn't get around to renovating the kitchen but I do have all the other usual kitchen stuff including a well stocked fridge/cupboard and a sink with running hot water. I also have to buy gas which isn't free.

jk

Post edited at 10:00
1
 Steve Crossley 12 May 2022
In reply to captain paranoia:

> > I agree for many/most it is, but when I look it up about 5% of women can't or won't cook

> Is cooking still "woman's work", then...?

I tend to do most of the cooking in our house, but I have chosen to do it, and enjoy it. I wonder how many men who cook, actually do much of the mundane day to day cookery working to a budget. Its pretty easy being The Galloping Gourmet (anyone remember him?) and cooking once or twice a week, with all the best produce, and getting a pat on the head. But the day to day stuff, hmm, no glory there.

 I suspect that the majority of the day to day cooking falls to women, hopefully thats changing in younger couples. But I have my doubts it, because most people will grow up seeing Mum cooking. 

Possibly if some of the cookery progs on TV showed more day to day cookery  it would help.

My Top Tips, a good temperature probe if you can afford, and a sharp knife, my Sabatier from Kendal Milne in Manchester is 30 years old, so they work out cheap.

4
 jkarran 12 May 2022
In reply to MG:

> That's true, although you also have to pay someone to produce it, which probably balances out.

Presumably the prisoners cook, they're paid a pittance so the £2/day will be nearly all materials maybe including energy and water but that's likely from the facilities budget.

jk

 gethin_allen 12 May 2022
In reply to McKEuan:

> They do! Home Economics. Used to love it when my cousin had home ec day. Year 7 seemed to consist of cakes and flapjacks!


This could be part of the problem. I remember making cheese cake, swiss roll, victoria sponge and a rather dodgy pasta thing that needed some very expensive cheese and truffles. Not exactly what anyone would call a balanced and affordable daily diet.

Poor diet and cooking skills is not limited to the poor, I had a house mate in university who ate the same meal every evening for the entire year, two burgers + pile of oven chips stuffed in the oven for ~30 mins. I think he survived because he went home most weekends and probably got fed something more nutritious,

 MeMeMe 12 May 2022
In reply to Steve Crossley:

> >

> >

> > 

> I wonder why? Do some families not have cookers? A microwave can be bought for (quick google time), £55.00, whereas a cooker, much lower than I thought £170.00, but still a lot more than a Microwave.

> Is it possible people in the direst need, do not even have a cooker.

Plus microwaves are much more efficient at cooking food, having the stove on for 1/2 a couple of times a day costs money.

Plus the extra time and space it takes to prep and cook the meal, time and space you might struggle to find if you're stuck in a tiny flat with a couple of kids.

I suspect some people would love to have the time, space, energy and resources to devote to making a meal but their circumstances make that difficult.

2
 Cobra_Head 12 May 2022
In reply to JLS:

> Only 30p and only 30 calories! Good for both waist and wallet. Win, win. What’s not to like?

It's cabbage, the devil's skin flakes!!

 Jimbo C 12 May 2022
In reply to gethin_allen:

> I had a house mate in university who ate the same meal every evening for the entire year, two burgers + pile of oven chips stuffed in the oven for ~30 mins.

There are definitely skills shortages in cooking in all walks of life. A Uni housemate once rang me to ask how long to cook a baked potato for, my reply was 'until it's cooked!'

Sadly I think that some people who know how to cook nutritious and cheap meals from scratch are still in need of food banks. We need a repeat of the 'baked bean wars' of the early 2000's, Netto beans went as low as 1p a tin IIRC.

1
 jkarran 12 May 2022
In reply to Jimbo C:

> Sadly I think that some people who know how to cook nutritious and cheap meals from scratch are still in need of food banks. We need a repeat of the 'baked bean wars' of the early 2000's, Netto beans went as low as 1p a tin IIRC.

Not really, that sort of pricing doesn't reflect the value or cost embedded within the product. Sustain it for long across multiple lines and something inevitably suffers, likely: retailer sustainability, product quality and the producers' wellbeing.

What we need is to reduce inequality so everyone can afford at least sufficient food, warmth and shelter for a dignified life within our society.

jk

Post edited at 15:05
1
 Maggot 12 May 2022
In reply to jkarran:

> What we need is to reduce inequality so everyone can afford at least sufficient food, warmth and shelter for a dignified life within our society.

Hahaha, are you on drugs? Oh hang on a minute, we've got 'Levelling Up' now haven't we!

I don't look at Twitter, but I had shufty at his (the Tory MP), what the ...., he's probably trying to be clever with his 'parody', but an immature, retarded school boy with a single brain cell could do better.  A supposedly professional politician is publishing utter, utter drivel like that, we're going down the toilet on repeated double flush.

1
 timjones 12 May 2022
In reply to Presley Whippet:

> Schools could offer cooking lessons but it would be at the expense of climbing coaching and so unpopular.  

Based on the level of enthusiasm that they have managed to instil in our daughter it appears that they did  a far better job in a very limited number of cooking lessons than they have managed with regular PE lessons throughout her entire time in school

 Moacs 12 May 2022
In reply to hang_about:

> Interesting. I looked at the price of cheap white rice - 45 p for 1 kg.

> Energy content is 130 cal per 100 g with a recommended calorific intake for a man of 2500 cal

> So this roughly equates to 2 kg of rice = 90p.

> Of course, you've got to cook it (energy costs) on a cooker (which you have to pay for) in a home (that you have to pay for). So I'd be very interested to see how one can get this calorific intake for 40 p a day. The boredom would be incredible and you'd end up will all sorts of nutrient and vitamin deficiencies, but hey ho - they know better.

Um, except that's bollocks.  The 130 calories is per 100g of *cooked* rice; your cost is dried rice.

 PaulJepson 12 May 2022
In reply to ThunderCat:

The BBC Panorama episode on the cost of living crisis was quite an eye-opener. What I saw was a lot of families that, a year ago, would have been pretty comfortable financially (home owners, car owners, multiple mobile phone and netflix subscriptions, reasonably well-paid jobs, etc.) but they were living on the edge, month-to-month and now suddenly they have to find another £150 a month for gas and electric which they do not have, or the cost of a tank of fuel doubling so they're having to skip meals.

Was a bit weird to see people using foodbanks, scrimping on everything and skipping meals in their homes with range cookers and wide-screen TVs. This isn't a criticism, I guess it's just what happens when the balance tips. There was a shot near the beginning which showed one of their budget spreadsheets which had mobile phone contracts for all the kids, tv subscriptions, and savings for Christmas and Holidays.  

There are obviously loads of people much, much worse off than these families (some of whom had an income of ~2k a month) and I don't know how they cope. There's a difference between proper poor and the new poor though. 

 jkarran 12 May 2022
In reply to PaulJepson:

> The BBC Panorama episode on the cost of living crisis was quite an eye-opener. What I saw was a lot of families that, a year ago, would have been pretty comfortable financially (home owners, car owners, multiple mobile phone and netflix subscriptions, reasonably well-paid jobs, etc.) but they were living on the edge, month-to-month and now suddenly they have to find another £150 a month for gas and electric which they do not have, or the cost of a tank of fuel doubling so they're having to skip meals.

Road fuel? It's up about 35-40% on pre-pandemic levels, not double even if it does feel like that at the till!

jk

In reply to ThunderCat and The Thread:

This is another one of those issues that I spend far too much of my time thinking about. Some of my other random thoughts:

It is true that many people living (struggling) on low incomes and using food banks still make ‘choices’ to have Netflix, TVs in every room and expensive phone contracts. But societal pressures, media, peer pressure etc all combine to ‘force’ people into what many people consider to be ‘wrong’ choices. And many folk would have had these so called luxuries before they fell on hard times (and stuck in long term contracts). 

And we do live in a society where keeping up with The Jones’s is, for many, very important. Hardly anyone with a swish, expensive, poor fuel economy car needs one - but they buy them - and suffer when fuel goes up. And still have to pay the car loan when they become skint. UK is a very materialistic society.

There appears to be a growing trend that all meals should be delish. For many, a jacket spud with beans is not happening. Porridge for breakfast = boring = skipped. And rich, meat based food ain’t good for the planet. This trend needs to stop. 

Being a parent is hard. Sticking with feeding your children cheap wholesome food is hard - takes time to buy and cook, kids nagging you for Turkey twizzlers, adverts on TV for stuff crust pizza and Deliveroo and Macky Ds. You’re struggling at work, bills going up. Or you’re  unemployed which screws you up. Pressure is everywhere. 

A mate of mine delivers take away food, and she delivers way more to low income areas than affluent areas, and they tip better in low income areas. 

You need a huge amount of confidence to flick the Vs to these pressures and plough the healthy living furrow. Easy if you’re  financially stable and brought up yourself in a supportive environment, but many aren’t.

The whole debate is overly influenced by middle classes giving their own personal view. And I include some health workers, who come out with ‘it’s cheaper to cook from scratch. I can do a lentil and aubergine lasagne for £x in 10 minutes.’ I heard someone on the radio who can cook a quiche, including making fresh pastry, in 30 minutes. Nonesense! But I can buy two pies for £1.20 from the pound bakers, and pizza and oven chips are well cheap. 

I’m up for budgeting and cooking classes. I’m also up for developing the self confidence of young people so when they are adults they are less materialistic and are less easily influenced by societal pressures. I’m supportive of community groceries and community allotments and well run food banks (they can get abused).  But I’m even more up for encouraging people to NOT vote Tory coz they really don’t give a f^ck. 

3
 seankenny 12 May 2022
In reply to Steve Crossley:

> My Top Tips, a good temperature probe if you can afford, and a sharp knife, my Sabatier from Kendal Milne in Manchester is 30 years old, so they work out cheap.

“The reason that the rich were so rich, Vimes reasoned, was because they managed to spend less money.

Take boots, for example. He earned thirty-eight dollars a month plus allowances. A really good pair of leather boots cost fifty dollars. But an affordable pair of boots, which were sort of OK for a season or two and then leaked like hell when the cardboard gave out, cost about ten dollars. Those were the kind of boots Vimes always bought, and wore until the soles were so thin that he could tell where he was in Ankh-Morpork on a foggy night by the feel of the cobbles.

But the thing was that good boots lasted for years and years. A man who could afford fifty dollars had a pair of boots that'd still be keeping his feet dry in ten years' time, while the poor man who could only afford cheap boots would have spent a hundred dollars on boots in the same time and would still have wet feet.

This was the Captain Samuel Vimes 'Boots' theory of socioeconomic unfairness.”

Terry Pratchett, Men at Arms

1
 mountainbagger 12 May 2022
In reply to seankenny:

A classic that.

Another slightly different example is kid's bikes. If you have the up front capital you can buy a really good bike and sell it when they grow out of it for the same money (more or less). So, you can have nice things but are only spending the same or often less than someone who can only afford very cheap things.

 seankenny 12 May 2022
In reply to mountainbagger:

> A classic that.

> Another slightly different example is kid's bikes. If you have the up front capital you can buy a really good bike and sell it when they grow out of it for the same money (more or less). So, you can have nice things but are only spending the same or often less than someone who can only afford very cheap things.

You could even melt the bike down and make yourself a nice set of knives with it. Last you 30 years those knives, so a bargain. 

 bruxist 12 May 2022
In reply to Steve Crossley:

> I wonder why? Do some families not have cookers? A microwave can be bought for (quick google time), £55.00, whereas a cooker, much lower than I thought £170.00, but still a lot more than a Microwave.

> Is it possible people in the direst need, do not even have a cooker.

I'm afraid you're right. People in hostels might have a microwave and a kettle but as jkarran points out, there's a lot more to making a meal. There's massive demand on food parcel provision right now, but right behind that demand is another usually unaddressed demand for white goods provision: lots of people have access to a microwave but don't have a fridge. Cookers, fridges & freezers, bed frames, clothes... It's all getting rather basic and desperate from an LA point of view.

One confusing thing for people reading this is the term "B&Bs". A B&B doesn't mean "Bed & Breakfast" in this context: it'll most often be just a room with maybe a sink, maybe a bed, a shared toilet and bathroom in the hallway, no cooking facilities and certainly no breakfast. In some cases B&Bs won't even have those basic facilities. It's meant as a halfway house - emergency housing provision for those fleeing domestic violence, for example - and in many areas it's sufficiently grim that people make themselves voluntarily homeless instead, which means they're no longer entitled to help with housing. It's for these people that foodbanks have started stocking tents & sleeping bags.

For those renting privately, slum landlordism is back in this country in a very big way - so the path upwards from homelessness to B&Bs to private renting can often be just a path into exploitation. I know people frequently have a mental image of single people forced into the circumstances I describe above, and that's true - there's plenty of divorced dads in their 50s and 60s living in tents and hostels - but there are families living like this too.

 Sean Kelly 12 May 2022
In reply to ThunderCat:

Spent part of this afternoon doing exactly this, delivering food parcels with the help of Mr. Google. Quite a cross-section of people encountered. I admire the hard work of the volunteers in the church which is the local distribution centre. MP's living in their ivory towers can say what they like, but perhaps they should go on a parcel run, it might just open their eyes a little!

2
 Philip 12 May 2022
In reply to ThunderCat:

When one tory MP disappears another useless lump appears to take their place.

Is this a potential untapped food source - could the poor simple eat Tories until we get back so some centrist government?

1
 john arran 12 May 2022
In reply to Philip:

Eat the Rich (7c)

Looks like this is a climbing thread after all 😉.

1
 deepsoup 12 May 2022
In reply to ThunderCat:

> I've double checked, and it's definitely not a Brass Eye script

Here's another:  https://metro.co.uk/2022/05/11/kent-dartford-tory-council-leader-tucks-into-buffet-at-food-bank-16627415/

1
 Fruit 12 May 2022
In reply to ThunderCat:

For all the flack Mr Anderson is getting, he is making some good points. Healthy food cooked from fresh ingredients is less expensive than many popular ultra processed alternatives.

Batch cooking got me through student life on a budget that left money spare for climbing trips.

it does appear that many people have missed out on learning to cook from basic principles.

13
In reply to Tony Buckley:

Victorian Britain ?

In reply to Bottom Clinger:

> To be fair, just cooked this meal in the photo for about 30p, so you could eat this three times a day. 

What is it?

In reply to Pete Pozman:

I was lying to prove a point. It’s cabbage nicked from t’internet. 

1
 aln 12 May 2022
In reply to ThunderCat:

The 30p a day he spends on food each day probably pays for one of the petals on one of the violet flowers that's delicately placed using tweezers, on top of the yuzu gel beside his carpacchio of venison.

 aln 12 May 2022
In reply to Bottom Clinger:

> I was lying to prove a point. It’s cabbage nicked from t’internet. 

I thought it was the ingredients for your latest booze experiment! 

In reply to Fruit:

“It does appear” based on what? Is there any actual evidence that poor cooking skills are a significant causal factor of poverty?

And being a student saving up for climbing trips isn’t comparable to trying to support a family below the poverty line.

3
 JLS 13 May 2022
In reply to Bottom Clinger:

> I was lying to prove a point. It’s cabbage nicked from t’internet

Cabbage actually costs 45p for a 80g portion (21 kcal)!!!

https://groceries.morrisons.com/products/morrisons-savoy-cabbage-210341011?gclid=EAIaIQobChMI8dDRmY_b9wIVB-7tCh2Hzgw0EAQYAiABEgIYKPD_BwE&gclsrc=aw.ds

In reply to ThunderCat:

Plainly the whole learn to cook thing is nostalgic bullsh*t. If the Tories want to feed people nutritionally adequately for the absolute minimum cost then having them cook their own meals would not be the correct approach. The logistics, storage and distribution for the raw ingredients and the space and equipment required for everyone to be able to cook from scratch are extremely inefficient compared with centralised food preparation and distribution of much smaller dry prepared meals.

What the Tories should actually do is make something like Huel powder (www.huel.com) in some huge centralised facility owned by one of their mates and give everybody a ration which meets their minimum nutritional requirements. They could get Amazon to deliver a bag every two or three weeks and all the recipients would need is water, a measuring scoop and a cup to mix it in.  

Without a kitchen people could create an extra bedroom so there'd be less need for social housing. Since they don't need to cook or go food shopping they can spend longer at their minimum wage jobs. And because food is cheaper people will be able to afford higher rents.

2
In reply to tom_in_edinburgh:

That is darkly wonderful, well done.

I hear Downing Street are on the look out for advisors, fancy a career change? 

2
 girlymonkey 13 May 2022
In reply to Presley Whippet:

> I hear Downing Street are on the look out for advisors, fancy a career change? 

TIE in Downing street would make a great TV show! Tom Vs the Tories! You could place bets every episode as to who will get punched!

1
In reply to girlymonkey:

> TIE in Downing street would make a great TV show! Tom Vs the Tories! You could place bets every episode as to who will get punched!

Hope he adopts the name ‘The TIE Fighter’…

(always wanted to squeeze that one in, thanks for the opportunity.


1
 Offwidth 13 May 2022
In reply to tom_in_edinburgh:

So close.... replace huel with soylent green.

2
In reply to Philip:

> Is this a potential untapped food source - could the poor simple eat Tories until we get back so some centrist government?

Adopting the theory ‘You are what you eat’, this could result in traditional Labour voters actually becoming Tory. Oh, just wait….

1
 Duncan Bourne 13 May 2022
In reply to NathanP:

> But surely everybody can just harvest the ducks from the expenses-funded duck house in their moats?


That reminds me I must put in a claim for my bug hotel. I've seven bees in it and not a one has paid any rent Is bird feed tax deductable now?

1
 cb294 13 May 2022
In reply to Bottom Clinger:

I think you have discovered the secret, Tory flavoured conservatism is just another form of BSE

1
 hang_about 13 May 2022
In reply to Moacs:

Yes - that was pointed out, somewhat more politely, above

In reply to tom_in_edinburgh:

> What the Tories should actually do is make something like Huel powder (www.huel.com) in some huge centralised facility 

Don't encourage them. The next pronouncement might be Soylent Green.

Or maybe "Food banks aren't necessary. Let the poor starve".

2
 duchessofmalfi 13 May 2022
In reply to Steve Crossley:

"Is it possible people in the direst need, do not even have a cooker."?

Sadly yes - try being homeless and living in a "B+B" supplied by the local council or try being too poor to pay the gas and electric.

 gimmergimmer 13 May 2022
In reply to Michael Hood:

His objective is to deflect criticism of the Conservative government.

 deepsoup 13 May 2022
In reply to captain paranoia:

> Soylent Green.

Ah yes, the Charlton Heston film set in the dystopian future of the year.. (checks notes).. 2022!


In reply to ThunderCat:

There is no such thing as bad publicity. The only good point to come out of the MPs  stupid comment is that it actively continues Marcus Rashords campaign and focuses minds on a longstanding issue .

1
 Dominic Green 13 May 2022

Looking at the op, even those figures work out as almost £100 per month for a family of 4. (30p per meal for four people, assuming three meals per day and seven days per week). You need access to a market, not guaranteed, otherwise it's the extra cost of shopping in a supermarket. Bulk cooking is an additional level of effort and possible cost. When I have encountered some of the most poor people in this society, things like access to a freezer aren't even guaranteed, let alone cooking facilities. I was listening at a conference,  a health worker talking about homeless family provision in Birmingham the other day, the statistics for residents in Barry Jackson tower in Aston would make your hair stand on end. And this is only going to get quite a lot worse. 

Sutton in Ashfield, if you're taking the bus with your shopping from the market in Mansfield, it's just under £5 for a return journey from the market. That's a couple of hours out of your day, during working hours, another £20 per month quite possibly. It's just not as glibly simplistic as this.

Even the head of Tesco was sounding the alarm the other day (the head of one of the energy companies the day before), and the  current crop of tories make them look like they're the Salvation Army!

It just looks like the guy has grabbed a bit of fragmentary information and locked onto it. That type of aggressive simplification of the situation is definitely part of the problems we are in, and has done nothing to offer solutions. 

In reply to ThunderCat:

> Problem solved,

> "Tory MP Lee Anderson says no massive need for food banks in UK

“I'm going to be as forthcoming as I can be, Mr. Anderson. You're here because we need your help. We know that you've been contacted by a certain individual: A man who calls himself Boris. Now, whatever you think you know about this man is irrelevant. He is considered by many authorities to be the most dangerous man alive. My colleagues believe that I'm wasting my time with you, but I believe you wish to do the right thing. We're willing to wipe the slate clean. Give you a fresh start. And all that we're asking in return is your cooperation in bringing a known terrorist to justice.”


1
 Fruit 13 May 2022
In reply to Stuart Williams:

> “It does appear” based on what? Is there any actual evidence that poor cooking skills are a significant causal factor of poverty?

I never said it caused poverty, my point is that if you can cook from basic ingredients you can eat nutritious meals for less  than the cost of many popular ultra processed alternatives. Spending less and getting more has to be a benefit, doesn’t it.
 

> And being a student saving up for climbing trips isn’t comparable to trying to support a family below the poverty line.

It is, however, empirical evidence that you can eat well on a restricted budget.

9
 john arran 13 May 2022
In reply to Fruit:

Sounds distinctly like you're laying at least some of the blame for many poor people's dietary difficulties on themselves. Have you stopped to consider that a much greater factor is likely to be that government policies over more than a decade have resulted in such folk being overworked, overtaxed and undereducated?

4
In reply to Fruit:

> my point is that if you can cook from basic ingredients you can eat nutritious meals for less  than the cost of many popular ultra processed alternatives.

That isn't necessarily true. Fresh ingredients are often more expensive than processed food, because the processing can use cheaper ingredients, and doesn't suffer from spoilage or wastage.

2
In reply to Fruit:

> It is, however, empirical evidence that you can eat well on a restricted budget.

No one is questioning that. The question is about whether food bank use is primarily due to poor cooking ability, which you said was a good point. Am I reading you right that you don’t have any evidence to support that view?

2
In reply to tom_in_edinburgh:

Soilent Green perhaps!

1
In reply to The New NickB:

Is that the sordid, Tory version of Soylent Green...?

 ExiledScot 14 May 2022
In reply to Fruit:

It's much easier and cheaper to feel full eating a pile of processed $hit than cooking healthy. There is also a time factor, if you are working two jobs, irregular zero hours contract, chasing your tail then spare time can be rare. Not everyone who cooks are stay at home daily fail reading mums getting tea ready for hubby, whilst having a little glass of red (kids at private school). 

1
In reply to tom_in_edinburgh:

A fine and, indeed, modest proposal!

 Dominic Green 14 May 2022
In reply to Fruit:

>  

> It is, however, empirical evidence that you can eat well on a restricted budget.

Access to those affordable sources of quality food for certain communities is a known issue. 
 

1
In reply to ExiledScot:

> It's much easier and cheaper to feel full eating a pile of processed $hit than cooking healthy. There is also a time factor, if you are working two jobs, irregular zero hours contract, chasing your tail then spare time can be rare. Not everyone who cooks are stay at home daily fail reading mums getting tea ready for hubby, whilst having a little glass of red (kids at private school). 

It's far more complicated than the Heil and the Tories would have it. And I agree that we nettle eaters are being unrealistic if we expect the mass of the population to follow our example. But... I see guys in the village Co-op queueing for 5 minutes with a can  of pop, big bag of crisps, choc bar, and sandwich in a plastic prism when in the same time at home they could make a mountain of sandwiches and a flask in the same time at less than half the cost. The can't-go- anywhere-without-a-throwaway-cup-of-coffee  thing must cost people a fortune. I don't think you'll get much for 30p though. People in extremis need money, not budgeting classes.

 ExiledScot 14 May 2022
In reply to Pete Pozman:

I think perhaps mental health, motivation, a goal at the end plays part. Many people are just frazzled, they likely know they can make a weeks sarnies for the same price as a Costa coffee and pannini but just can't face it, sugar addiction too makes the snacks more appealing. Stopping the ban on junk food on TV seems counter productive, but they are desperately clutching at headlines to distract. 

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