Food Poverty: Scotland

Part of Delegated Legislation – in the House of Commons at 8:05 pm on 7th May 2019.

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Photo of Hugh Gaffney Hugh Gaffney Labour, Coatbridge, Chryston and Bellshill 8:05 pm, 7th May 2019

I want to start by reflecting on a scene from Ken Loach’s 2016 film “I, Daniel Blake”, where Katie Morgan, overcome with hunger, begins to eat cold baked beans from a can in her local food bank. Hayley Squires’ powerful performance as Katie struck a chord with people. It was a stark reminder of the real impact that food poverty has in communities across the UK.

In 2015, NHS Health Scotland conducted its initial research on the nature and extent of food poverty in Scotland, finding that food poverty was because of individuals being on a very low income or facing destitution. That restricts their choice of what food they can buy as well, as when and where they can buy it. The research highlighted that food poverty also had negative impacts on an individual’s health and wellbeing. Other research undertaken in the UK has found a link between food poverty and certain medical conditions or illnesses.