The country saw a move towards more ‘local’ food purchasing behaviour and people reported wasting or throwing away food less often according to a report out this morning by the Food Standards Agency.
However more people were also going hungry.Households with children, people with health issues and people aged 16-24 were most likely to either skip meals or use food charities to feed themselves or their family in April and May
The FSA said this meant between 6.3 million and 7.7 million adults had reduced meal portion sizes or missed meals altogether because of a lack of money, and between 2.7 million and 3.7 million adults sought charity food or used a food bank.
Tthe numbers of people reporting eating food that had gone past its use-by date varied by food type, ranging from 17% for smoked fish to 36% for bagged salads.
The figures also show that people are buying fewer take-aways overall when compared to before lockdown while purchasing from sources such as vendors on Facebook Marketplace and food-sharing apps remained stable.
Heather Hancock, Chair at the Food Standards Agency, said:
‘The Covid-19 Consumer Tracker is helping us understand people’s food concerns during these difficult times. This knowledge has already helped to inform the work of the Ministerial Taskforce on Vulnerabilities and will continue to do so.
‘I would like to say thank you to the voluntary sector and local authorities, who are working hard to find a variety of routes to address governments in the UK. We will continue to play our part in responding to this global pandemic and ensuring food is safe and what it says it is.’