To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, what steps his Department is taking to help encourage supermarkets to ensure that low cost food ranges are stocked and accessible in smaller, high street stores.
Defra regularly engages supermarkets and discusses the cost-of-living issue, and we welcome the steps announced by some retailers to support both their workforce and customers. We will continue to explore the range of measures they can take to ensure the availability of affordable food, for example, by maintaining value ranges, price matching and price freezing measures. However, it is not for the UK Government to set retail food prices nor to comment on day-to-day commercial decisions by companies.
We recognise that people are facing pressures with the increasing cost of living and that some people continue to require extra support. From this month, the Government is providing an additional £500 million to help households with the cost of essentials, bringing the total funding for this support to £1 billion.