milk fridge

The food safety watchdog warned people against turning off their fridges and freezers to save money

The Food Standards Agency (FSA) has warned of people taking risks because of financial worries caused by rising energy prices and the cost of living crisis.

The food safety watchdog has issued a warning to consumers taking big health risks such as eating food past its use by date or switching off their freezer and fridge as a way to save money.

At least one-third of participants taking part in an FSA September survey said they had eaten food past its use by date at least once in the past month because they couldn’t afford to buy more food.

“We know many people are worried about food affordability right now and our evidence shows people are finding ways to save money where they can,” said FSA CEO Emily Miles.

“It’s not a good idea to turn off the fridge or eat food past its use by date as these things can lead to a higher risk of becoming ill with food poisoning.”

The same survey also found 18% of participants turned off a fridge and/or freezer containing food at least once in the last month, to reduce energy bills and save money.

Miles warned that turning off the fridge could lead to bacteria multiplying, and said shoppers should always freeze food on or before the use by date to prevent wastage.

With food inflation running rampant at nearly 15%, a whopping four in 10 people said they were worried about being able to afford food in the next month.