Bakers Food & Allied Workers Union (BFAWU) released a recent report that detailed workers in the UK food industry are facing an increasingly dire situation.
Nearly 20% rely on food banks to meet basic needs, while almost 50% have had to skip meals due to insufficient funds.
The authors of the report attributed these “disturbing” results to low wages and rising energy costs, both exacerbated by pandemic-driven pandemic and inflation crises in the UK.
As they saw it, these factors combined into a “cost of living crisis”, leaving many workers unable to afford necessities such as food, energy, and housing, let alone leisure and family activities.
To gather these statistics, the BFAWU surveyed approximately 370 food production, distribution, and retail workers from across the UK.
Their survey discovered that those reporting eating less due to financial restrictions had increased from 35% to 57% from last year – 55 respondents were worried about running out of food. In contrast, 80 reported preferring less healthy, cheaper meals instead.
“Workers experience food insecurity due to not earning enough to feed themselves and their families.” According to this report, this situation needs to be revised; many who produce and supply the UK with its food cannot access its benefits.
The current cost-of-living crisis in the UK has been blamed on several factors, including the Ukraine war, climate change, and structural issues within the British energy sector.
According to the authors of a report, however, wage stagnation may be at its root, as 63% reported being unable to meet basic needs from their income alone.
To address this crisis, the report’s authors called for dramatic reforms, such as raising the minimum wage to at least EUR17.20 an hour and advocating for an “ordinance on food”. Hence, no child or adult feels food insecurity in what is the fifth most prosperous country worldwide.
Recent findings by the Bakers Food & Allied Workers Union (BFAWU) reveal a more perilous situation for workers in the UK food industry.
Survey findings indicated that nearly one out of every five food workers now depends on food banks for sustenance, with just under half having had to skip meals due to insufficient funds.
The report’s authors attribute these “sobering” results to low wages and rising energy bills, with workers struggling to meet necessities like food, energy, and housing.
This survey involved 370 food production, distribution, and retail workers across Britain; respondents reported eating less, opting for cheaper but unhealthier meals, and feeling fearful of running out of food supplies.
The report highlights the cost of living crisis, which has been blamed on various factors, such as the Ukraine war, climate change, and structural issues in the British energy sector.
The report highlighted how data shows apparent suffering among people and recommended radical solutions as being necessary. In April, the government raised the minimum wages for workers over 23 by 9.7% from €10.93 to €11.99 per hour.
Bakers Food & Allied Workers Union’s report paints an unfavorable portrait of food workers in the UK. Their survey shows that 20% rely on food banks to meet basic needs, with half skipping meals due to insufficient funds.
They attribute this situation to low wages, rising energy costs, and inflation – all factors they point out as factors in food insecurity in Britain.
Recent actions taken by government increases minimum wages are seen as taking steps in this direction. However, more should be done – their recent increase can only serve as one step in this direction, but more steps must be taken.