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Europe's food 'social security' scheme

Words by Abi Scaife

Europe is making waves by experimenting with food ‘social security’.

Tell me more.

At the heart of it is a plan to move away from food as something you purchase and trade for - something you need privilege to buy.

Schemes proposed by France and Belgium suggest a fixed sum of money being given to each person (or parent/guardian for minors), perhaps on a card, that can be redeemed like a bank card. Suggested amounts include around €100-150 ($106-159/£88-133) per month for adults and €50-75 ($53-80/£44-67) for children.

Where does the money come from?

Like socialised healthcare (the NHS, for example) the money would come out of taxes. Belgium has suggested adults earning €3,000 ($3,190/£2,650) per monthly would contribute €150 ($159/£133) every month, and that the amount put into the pot would be adjusted based on how much a person earns - less for less income and so forth.

However, each person would still receive the same amount towards food - effectively helping to redistribute the wealth within the country.

Other suggestions include state funding and more - but one thing is for sure, and that is that the idea of food social security isn’t going away.

If you want to help people in the UK with food security today, you can do so by donating to charities like the Food Foundation.

This article aligns with the UN SDG Good Health and Wellbeing.

This article aligns with the following UN SDGs

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