Hunger, austerity and ethnicity

Yorkshire & HumberGeneric Health Relevance
Start Date: 1 Jan 2014


The consequences of austerity economics brought about by the current cutbacks in welfare state provision are of increasing concern. A survey by the Netmums website found that one in five UK mothers regularly goes without meals to feed their children. Thousands of families now rely on charities and emergency food banks.  In 2012/21013 the Trussell Trust, the largest operator of food banks in the UK, fed 350,000 people – 100,000 more than it had anticipated and an increase of 170% over the previous year. People use food banks for many different reasons, including unemployment, debt, family breakdown, homelessness, illness and underpaid work.


To map food banks and related services in Bradford, develop a typology of their structure, services, aims etc, and relate their location and use to local socioeconomic and ethnic contexts, using GIS methods, case studies and interviews.

To describe the prevalence of food poverty, hunger and use of food banks through: web-based surveys and linkage to primary care data for BiB participants; surveys of teachers and health-care providers - with a focus on social and economic factors related to vulnerability and resilience, in different ethnic groups.

To explore in depth, using qualitative methods, families’ experiences of food poverty and hunger, and the pressures that shape their strategies to balance food and non-food spending.

Prof John Wright