The road to the food bank is paved by failures in the benefit system

Food banks have become a political football. Some say demand is driven by supply: if you build it, they will come. Others point to the rising cost of living, especially food price inflation, or benefit cuts as the key drivers of demand (or need).  Yet, with the notable exception of a long-suppressed report for Defra, and regular figures on food bank use from the Trussell Trust,  in-depth evidence on reasons why people use food banks has been in short supply. In a vacuum, commentators have felt at liberty to allow their preconceptions free reign.

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