Affordable Food Deal Report: Keeping Britain’s food affordable

Best for Britain's Affordable Food Deal campaign published its report looking at the UK's access to affordable high quality food after Brexit. 

The campaign calls for an Affordable Food Deal with Europe to make sure British shops continue to have safe and high quality food available. We don’t want affordable to mean bad quality - everyone deserves to eat healthy food, no matter their income. That why’s an Affordable Food deal also means ensuring the UK doesn’t lower it’s food standards.

Read the report in full here.

We want the UK and the EU to work together to ensure our food remains affordable, accessible and healthy.

Executive summary

The UK’s record on food poverty is one of the most shameful in Europe - we are responsible for one in five of all severely food insecure people in Europe. More than one in ten British children have experienced food insecurity. Since April, and the national lockdown, the number of food insecure adults in the UK has quadrupled.

The UK Global Tariff, set to apply if the UK ends 2020 without a Free Trade Agreement with the EU, will see staple food items increase in price. Analysis by Best for Britain shows many are impossible to produce domestically, or source reliably outside the EU through an FTA partner nation. Basic necessities such as tinned tomatoes and pasta will increase by 10-20 per cent in real price terms .For example, a packet of pasta which could provide the basis of a cheap meal for a family of five, will go from costing 53p to 65p. The UK consumed 343, 200 tonnes of pasta last year. While the itemised price increase may sound small, that’s an increase of more than £20million for British consumers every year. It is hard to overstate just how serious an impact this could have on families already struggling to put food on the table. The British Medical Journal concurred that the biggest driver of household food insecurity is food prices.

Even very small cost of living increases will have significant effects on regions set to be disproportionately impacted by a no deal or thin deal Brexit, on top of a coronavirus-induced recession. Some of these regions, such as the North West and East of England, are already struggling with high levels of food poverty. Polling by Best for Britain reveals voters in these regions fear the impact on their household budgets if a comprehensive trade agreement with the EU is not struck. Without this deal, a perfect economic storm is on the horizon, pulling already struggling families into food insecurity, debt and ill-health – and piling additional, terrible pressures on the many who are already wrestling with food insecurity.

Read the full report here.