Mum living on £20 after bills relies on free food due to rising prices

A struggling mum shared her worries with BBC Panorama in its recent episode, Why is Food So Expensive, as soaring food prices have left her with just £20 spare per week after rent and bills are paid. The report comes as journalist Lisa Robson delved into the “dizzying list” of global factors driving food inflation in tonight’s show.

Emma, who lives in Kent with her 14-year-old daughter Anna, shared how she now has to rely on free food from the community fridge at the local church to get by.

Emma reminisced: “Before, we’d just go to a supermarket and just put things in our trolley – we can’t do that anymore.

“Every bit of food, you’ve got to really make it go a long way.”

According to Emma, her income is limited by health issues, which don’t enable her to work easily. Instead, she depends on Universal Credit and Child Benefit.

READ MORE: ‘Ultra-processed’ foods linked to more than 10% of premature deaths

The team told the show they now help feed around 7,000 people a month, up from 500 per month when the service first launched around 18 months ago.

Walton Vale Community Shop worker Robbie said: “I’ve never seen it this bad in my lifetime”

“I would say about 60 percent of people that come here are in work poverty. Their wages aren’t enough to keep them warm at home and feed them as well.”

He continued: “We’ve had postmen here, we’ve had firemen here, nurses, loads of pensioners. People actually depend on us now.

“We can’t cope with it, and other organisations can’t cope with it. It’s catastrophic.”

Why is Food So Expensive aired at 8pm on Monday, November 14 on BBC One. 

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