Dietary Inequalities

We work to tackle inequalities in the food system as experienced by low-income groups, children, and other groups at particular risk of poor dietary outcomes.

Key Stats

18% of households experienced food insecurity in September 2022 affecting nearly 10 million adults 

See our Food Insecurity Tracker for more

26% of households with children experienced food insecurity in September 2022 affecting an estimated 4 million children 

See our Food Insecurity Tracker for more

Food price inflation has risen by 16.9% in the 12 months to December 2022

See our latest Food Prices Monthly Blog for more

The cost of a Basic Basket of food has increased by approximately 16% since the beginning of April 2022 

See our Basic Basket Tracker for more

The poorest fifth of UK households would need to spend 43% of their disposable income on food to meet the cost of the Government-recommended healthy diet. This compares to just 10% for the richest fifth.

See our Broken Plate report for more

More healthy foods are nearly three times as expensive per calorie as less healthy foods

See our Broken Plate report for more

800,000 children living in poverty in England do not qualify for Free School Meals

See our Feed the Future Campaign for more

Children in the most deprived tenth are twice as likely to have obesity as the least deprived tenth

See our Children's Right2Food Dashboard for more

One in five children have overweight or obesity in their first year of school

See our Data Story on Early Years Nutrition for more

Healthy life expectancy is 18 years less for men and 20 years less for women in the most deprived tenth compared to the least deprived tenth

See our Data Story on Dietary Health Disparities for more

22% of places to buy food in the least deprived fifth of local authorities are fast-food outlets compared with 31% in the most deprived fifth.

See our Data Story on Regional Dietary Inequalities for more

54% of households on Universal Credit experienced food insecurity in September 2022

See our Food Insecurity Tracker for more

58% of food insecure households have cut down on buying fruit and 48% have cut down on buying veg

See our Food Insecurity Tracker for more

Households with someone limited a lot by disability are more than three times as likely to experience food insecurity as households with no disabilities

See our Food Insecurity Tracker for more

To ensure that everyone can eat well during the cost of living crisis, The Food Foundation are calling for: 

  1. Urgent action to ensure that all children in poverty have access to at least one nutritious meal a day at school by expanding the provision of Free School Meals to all children on Universal Credit

  2. Renewed Government commitment to increase benefits in line with inflation to prevent the shocking levels of food insecurity in households with people on Universal Credit and people with disabilities increasing even more dramatically.  

  3. Action by retailers to make it easier for people to afford the food they need and rebalance the cost of a basic shopping basket to make the healthy options the most affordable.  

Our current work in this area is funded by

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