felix project

Source: The Felix Project

Felix Project CEO Charlotte Hill said the cost of living crisis was having a ‘catastrophic impact on people’s lives’, with many at risk of regularly missing meals

One in 10 low-income Londoners is living on less than £3 a day as the cost of living crisis intensifies.

A new survey by London’s biggest surplus food redistribution network, The Felix Project, showed that almost one-tenth of respondents (9%) only had £2.85 a day to spend on breakfast, lunch and dinner.

The “shocking” impact of rising living costs on the capital’s lowest-income families was revealed in the YouGov survey that asked Londoners with an annual salary of under £20,000 how much money they had left for food per week after paying their bills.

Additionally, 12% said they had between £20 and £29.99 a week to spend on food – just over £4.28 a day – which is less than half the average household’s weekly food shop.

Even more concerningly, 4% said they had £10 at most to spend on food, while 2% said they had “nothing left at all” to spend on groceries.

The Felix Project said the soaring cost of bills was leading more low-income Londoners to cut back on food, putting even more pressure on organisations like food banks and community kitchens that are helping to feed the nation against the current economic backdrop.

Four in 10 parents to children of ages 18 or under in London with an income of under £20,000 said they had skipped meals or not bought food for themselves Four in 10 parents to children of ages 18 or under in London with an income of under £20,000 said they had skipped meals or not bought food for themselves to ensure they had food for their children and 20% said they were very worried about being able to afford to feed their children this winter.

The founder of North Kensington Community Kitchen, a local community group helping feed those in need in what is a typically affluent area of West London, Melanie Juno Wolfe, said the organisation was feeding over 1,000 people per week including many “vulnerable children”.

“It’s shocking how we are distributing to a demographic that are living in one of the richest areas in the world but experience great deprivation,” Wolfe said.

Read more: Supporting the likes of FareShare should be one of Jeremy Hunt’s easier decisions

Those in the Felix Project’s network also noted the rising cost of cooking was a major issue, with nearly half saying they were concerned about being able to pay energy bills linked to cooking food.

Most said they were opting to eat only one hot meal a day, eating food that allows for reduced cooking times, and cook more microwave meals.

The Felix Project’s CEO, Charlotte Hill, said she was “sadly not surprised” by the latest survey results.

“We know from our community groups that many people are too worried to turn on their ovens and have simply stopped eating hot food.

“We recently heard from a housing group that told me people are asking if gas supplies to their homes can be switched off, so they are not tempted to use their oven or boiler.

“The cost of living crisis is having a catastrophic impact on people’s lives and leaving too many at risk of regularly missing meals.”

The surplus food redistribution network, which runs FareShare’s operations in London and works closely with all the major retailers, is currently struggling with a dizzying rise in demand for its services as more people become first-time food bank users due to the cost of living crisis.

The Felix Project launched the Empty Plater Emergency Appeal last week to help Londoners who “simply can’t wait for another new government to act”.

The Felix Project’s latest YouGov survey sample included 1,513 adults, of which 348 were parents to children of ages 18 or under with an income of under £20,000.