Photo of Dan Byles

Dan Byles (North Warwickshire, Conservative)

To ask the Secretary of State for Justice what the average cost of each meal provided to a prisoner was in the latest period for which figures are available.

Photo of Crispin Blunt

Crispin Blunt (Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Ministry of Justice) (Prisons and Probation); Reigate, Conservative)

The National Offender Management Service (NOMS) does not hold information on the actual cost of each prisoner meal. This could be provided only at a disproportionate cost.

The responsibility for determining prisoner food budgets lies with the governor who will set aside a realistic sum to meet the dietary needs of their prisoner population. Meal requirements vary between establishments and are based on the prisoner population, local regimes and seasonal availability. The average daily cost(l) for food (including beverages) per prisoner per day in public sector prisons was £2.20 for the financial year ending 2010.

It is possible to estimate what the average daily cost per prisoner meal would be based on the understanding that breakfast, lunch and dinner account for approximately 20%, 40% and 40% of the daily food expenditure. But these percentages will vary from one establishment to another and are for illustrative purposes only—please see the following table.

Year ending 31 March Estimated total (1) (£ million) Per prisoner per meal (for illustration only) (£) Estimated average daily food expenditure per prisoner (1) (£)
    Breakfast Lunch Dinner  
2010 60 0.44 0.88 0.88 2.20
2009 62 0.46 0.92 0.92 2.31
2008 56 0.42 0.85 0.85 2.12
2007 51 0.39 0.79 0.79 1.97
2006 49 0.39 0.77 0.77 1.93
2005 43 0.36 0.73 0.73 1.87
2004 45 0.36 0.72 0.72 1.81
2003 42 0.34 0.69 0.69 1.72
2002 40 0.35 0.70 0.70 1.74
2001 34 0.33 0.66 0.66 1.64
2000 35 0.29 0.58 0.58 1.46
1999 35 0.29 0.58 0.58 1.44
1998 n/a n/a n/a n/a n/a
1997 n/a n/a n/a n/a n/a
(1) The data has been calculated using available management information from the NOMS finance systems and assumes (hat all transactions have been allocated and recorded against the correct accounting codes.

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