Blog: Let them eat stale bread

Michelle Russell | 28 August 2013

Jamie Oliver appears to be courting controversy this week after suggesting Britain's low-income families could save money and eat more nutritionally by eating stale bread.

The TV chef was speaking to the Radio Times this week about the food habits of low-income families when he began his rant.

Oliver suggested to the publication that Britain's poorest families waste their money on ready meals and "don't know how to feed themselves properly", instead choosing more expensive options like TV dinners.

Oliver, who says he finds it "hard to talk about modern-day poverty", insists he is "not judgemental" of poor families. He adds that "some of the most inspirational food in the world" comes from areas where people are "financially challenged".

Imran Hussain, head of policy for Poverty Action Group, responded to Oliver's comments and said that while the chef has made "a huge contribution" to improving school meals, for many families it's low income which gets in the way of healthy eating.

While Oliver may appear to be courting controversy with his comments, it is worth remembering that he is also promoting his latest programme on Channel 4 - Jamie's Money Saving Meals - a show designed to help people save on their food bill.

But from a man who promoted ready meals for Sainsbury's and with an estimated fortune of GBP150m, his comments are likely to be met with heated responses from some low-income consumers.

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