Blog Action Day: How Jamie Oliver highlights UK poverty

Today is Blog Action Day and thousands of bloggers are uniting to talk about poverty.

Now I know that poverty is rife in the developing world, but sometimes I think people forget the poverty in developed countries.

In the UK, Jamie Oliver is midway through a series called Jamie’s Ministry of Food, where he’s attempting to get an entire town, Rotherham, to learn to cook properly.

I’m impressed by his drive and passion for the project and think it’s immensely honourable, but it’s just highlighted to me the problem many people have in affording ingredients.

Don’t get me wrong, it’s good that people are learning how to cook beef stir fry or chicken wrapped in prosciutto, but Jamie is paying for all these ingredients.

Once he leaves, how many people are going to be able to afford to buy these items: beef is expensive, even if you buy it diced and prepackaged. So is salmon, especially if you’re feeding a family.

I’m not denying that takeaways aren’t just as expensive, but food costs are spiralling and for many people, it’s tough to buy much of this food.

A feature in The Guardian a couple of weeks ago pointed out that it’s far cheaper to get calorific intake through ‘value’ high-fat sausages than good quality meat-packed bangers. The same is true for french fries and similar junk food.

This is why people eat takeaways. I’m not denying that people need to be better educated about food, but money talks and for the underclass in the UK it will always be more appealing to live on crap than learn how to cook and spend a little more!

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