Food & Drink, Series 2, Every Last Crumb Food & Drink live discussion

7 Mar 2014 Last updated at 13:01

27.1.14 LIVE DEBATE: Is our food too cheap?

This debate took place on 27.1.14 and is no longer live. Please feel very welcome to read the comments below but any new emails or messages will not be read.
  • 27 Jan 2014 21:53:56

    Sheila's final thought: 

    It's been an interesting debate and great to hear such diverse opinions.  I took a controversial - or even extreme - position because I want to get people thinking.  Why don't we value food in the UK?  Why is cheapness at the checkout seen as the key value? What about the other costs of cheap food - to the NHS, environment, rural economy and the rest?  How we shop, cook (or don't) and eat shapes the world around us. Worth thinking about.
  • 27 Jan 2014 21:48:34

    Is it all the fault of BOGOFs?

    Darren McCabe
    @BBCFoodandDrink supermarkets need to wind in un-neccesary BOGOF offers and stop so much pre-pack fruit & veg and have more loose
    Toxic Dolly
    @BBCFood @SheilaDillon It's all the "3 for £10" offers encouraging you to think if you just buy 1 you're paying over the odds!!
    Sheila says: BOGOFs are a BIG problem and they cost the farmers NOT the supermarkets.  But actually, supermarkets are moving away from using them.  BOGOFs are much less common now than they were 2 years ago.
  • 27 Jan 2014 21:44:35

    Is food waste a middle class problem?

    Ros Clarke
    @BBCFood Food waste is mostly a middle class problem. Raising prices would punish those already struggling to feed families. @SheilaDillon
    Sheila says: My day with the bin men says otherwise.  There was no difference in food waste between the middle and working class areas we covered.
  • 27 Jan 2014 21:41:58

    It's about the shopping list

    [email] I had to agree with all the comments on tonight's programme. I never, ever go shopping without a list.  And I stick to the list.  Rarely do I impulse buy and that way I hardly ever throw food away - in fact its a rarity.


    The problem as I see it is, there is just too much available on the supermarket shelves.  You see something and say to yourself that would be good.  You go home, it goes in the fridge then you find you dont have time to cook it properly.  Getting home from work you want something quick and easy and just reach for a packet of pizza!  Maybe thats why there is a growing problem with obesity.

  • 27 Jan 2014 21:39:10

    What about the kids?

    [email]  I am a catering manager in a primary school in Bradford and one of my biggest battles is getting the children to eat the food on their plate, I have been a chef in restaurants for 25 years before I went into school catering, everything I produce is cooked to a restaurant standard but I feel children are still on the McDonalds ideal, if you have to chew it I can't be bothered, it would be great if we could educate the children to appreciate the flavours and textures involved in good food, Jamie Oliver did a good job highlighting the rubbish school children were being fed but I feel this is being wasted by the amount they are wasting by not eating the food being provided by competent caterers.

  • 27 Jan 2014 21:36:18

    Common Sense!

    [email] I would just like to say that we need to use a bit of common sense and not just go by use by dates, and best before dates, which to a lot of people who haven’t experienced working alongside our mums in the kitchen and buying food, and learning to make the best of what we have, throw away things totally unnecessary.


    As was shown on Food and Drink on BBC 2 this evening, we need to learn and teach the younger generation, skills in the kitchen, and when shopping, to buy what is right for your family, and to plan meals if necessary, rather than impulse buy.


    I was taught to cook by my mum and could cook at 10 years old a roast dinner, and nothing was wasted, and I don’t like to waste anything myself, so try to regularly look in the fridge, and in the freezer, and add sauces and various herbs to make things tasty, and make a shopping list for the weekly shop, or write things down as and when they run out.  

  • 27 Jan 2014 21:31:14

    Sheila is WRONG!

     That's an irresponsible, uninformed thing to say on national TV !!!  I am struggling every day of the week and I work full time. If supermarkets think they can put prices even higher because of comments like that, then shame on you!I waste nothing and that's because I ensure I only buy what I can use. There are thousands and thousands of single people like me who hate BOGOF offers. Theres price inflation right there, and potential wastage. They should be banned. There is no such thing as cheap meat or fish in any supermarket in my city!!! I cannot afford to buy either any more!!!  Where are you getting your information from!!!! You ( Sheila Dillon ) sound like a politician, i.e. overpaid, underworked, out-of-touch with reality, and living in a minority bubble!!!!!!!!!!  Aaaaaaaarrrggghhhhh!!!!!!!!!!!!!!


    Mr Angry from Plymouth

    Sheila says: Sadly not overpaid! Cheap food costs us all - processed food sold at rock bottom prices is generally high in fat, salt and carbs contributing to obesity which is currently costing the NHS £5 BILLION a year.  And we pay a price in the destruction of farms and rural economies. But we do need to talk about the supermarkets - we should all be aware of what's going on.
    Leanne Webb
    @BBCFood its all about education. Have basic cooking skills back in schools and then food wastage in years to come will drop
  • 27 Jan 2014 21:24:32

    Education!  Education!  Education!

     We need to educate people to use their senses to decide if food should be used or not. Huge quantities of food are wasted because people are slaves to expiry / use by dates. Our parents and grandparents made the decision whether to use food based on smell and look and knew how to use up leftovers. The current education system and supermarkets have a lot to answer for in terms of waste.


    Ness T
    @LFHW_UK @BBCFoodandDrink I think lack of time is a major cause of food waste, with both parents working dinner needs to be quick and easy.
    Sue Dawe
    Sue Dawe @suedawe1 tweeted:
    @Lea_webb82 @BBCFood I totally agree with you, education is key & also making it fun.
     It is alright for Sheila Dillon to advocate higher food prices on her income.Is she suggesting that only the rich should be able to eat.The real answer lies in better education starting in school.


    Sheila says: Knowing how to cook is key - without basic skills it's very difficult to feed yourself well. 
  • 27 Jan 2014 21:22:19

    We agree with Sheila!

    Anne Jenkin
    @sheiladillon @bbcfood pls make more programmes highlighting cost of food waste and great leftover recipes. All could do more to waste less
    Scrumptious Scran
    Delighted to see @bbcfoodanddrink tackling food waste. Much as I try, am just as guilty. Education is key - leftovers recipes on blog soon.
    @SabrinaGhayour @XantheClay @SheilaDillon I'd rather pay more & get better quality but have less of it, bulk out meals/more veggie nights
    I make sure I waste as little food as possible. I cook for a family of 4 and think food is expensive enough as it is. I do enjoy cooking, I think my interest in cooking helps me not waste food as I enjoy the challenge
    Jenny Tschiesche
    @BBCFood @SheilaDillon if we bought decent food but not so much of it we'd all be better off.
  • 27 Jan 2014 21:12:50

    I can't afford to spend more on food? Are you mad Sheila?

    Rosemary Ward
    @BBCFoodandDrink please don't advocate food price increases.We don't all waste food,with a family of 5 to feed I struggle enough financially
    sussie @corbs536 tweeted:
    @BBCFoodandDrink food is expensive to some of us. For god sake my son and I can only afford 1 meal a day now because home & car expenses up
    damien tomlinson
    @BBCFoodandDrink so annoyed at that woman! Lets up the price of food so that, as well as gas, electric and travel becomes a hobby 4 the rich
     What an absolutely ridiculous comment to make!   All that will happen if the price of food is raised is make it too expensive for even more people, increasing the need for more food banks!  As Mary Berry said, it's food education that is needed. I know people who throw food away if it is, even on the use by date!  The people that can afford to throw food away will continue to do so, they will just be throwing away more expensive food. Education is the key!
    Sheila says: A lot of people are struggling but at the same time there is massive waste which is why we need this debate.  I am talking about desperate measures to make people value food more.  The average family in the UK spends about 10% of their income on food  (DEFRA). According to  some figures, that's less than we spend on take away coffee and foreign holidays.
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