Ten takeaways from It doesn’t have to be like this…

It doesn’t have to be like this… was the start of a really good conversation about food and feeding people well, and we hope you’ll be a part of that over the coming weeks and months. In the meantime, we thought we’d recap on some of the themes that cropped up – here are ‘ten takeaways’ from the day.


  • 1: The voices of children are crucial. This is about future generations, and how we enable wellbeing – and children have common sense and practical solutions and suggestions


  • 2: Scale is vital is we’re going to create good quality, sustainable and cost effective solutions to tackling the cost-of-living crisis


  • 3: Subsidy subsidy subsidy. If we can subsidise electricity, why not food? The answer at the moment might be that it’s because politicians arent affected by the cost of food… so we need to change that thinking.


  • 4: If peoples behaviour is bad, theres usually something behind it… ClywdAlyn gave staff the flexibility to spend money on what their tenants needed. And they committed to not evicting people. For the next two years, rent arrears fell. Think differently.


  • 5: Education is key – how to cook, what food dates mean; how to reduce waste. Schools have a big part to play in our relationship with food and wellbeing.


  • 6: Partnerships make a difference. A partnership approach means we can advocate for good food from across a variety of different angles, so make a point about how important it is.


  • 7: Eating five-a-day costs a family of four £2.05 a day – which is £61.50 every month. The cost of meat – of chicken – is £4.40 a day – another £132 per month. Which means it costs £193.50 for a family to eat one good meal a day.


  • 8: When people eat well they can cope well… Food is the routine of everybodys life. It takes care of their physical health, but also their mental health. And it can help them stay warm. How do we expect people to cope if they havent got that structure?


  • 9: This is going to be the most aggressive downturn any of us have ever seen. Prices are rising across the board, and they won’t go back to previous levels. We have to be as active and aggressive as the problem is. We have to be brave. When we think about services, we have to connect them to need.


  • 10: What can you do? Have this conversation with other people you work with; meet with… How many different organisations and voices can we get involved?