David Cameron

Labour has accused the government of allowing food policy to descend into chaos, as it set out new proposals to reduce the reliance on food banks to feed the poor.

The party is to unveil a new new-five-point plan which it said would address the root causes of rising food bank dependency by tackling low pay, ensuring a joined-up approach to food policy in government, and creating a social security system that “treats people fairly”. It cited figures from the Trussell Trust charity showing the number of people using food banks has increased from 41,000 in 2009-10 to 913,000 in 2013-14. 

As part of its plans Labour said it would ensure a co-ordinated government approach to food policy, ending what it called “the chaos in food policy under the Tories where no minister has taken responsibility for tackling food bank dependency.”

Shadow environment secretary Maria Eagle will set out the plan in a visit to food bank in Central London today. “The Tories’ attitude to the relentless rise in hunger in Britain speaks volumes for what they stand up for,” said Eagle.

“They refuse to accept any responsibility for it, despite the fact their policies are making it worse.”