Zero Hunger

2020 Edition
| Editors: Walter Leal Filho, Anabela Marisa Azul, Luciana Brandli, Pinar Gökçin Özuyar, Tony Wall

Neoliberal Welfare Reforms and Emergency Food Aid in the UK

  • Dave BeckEmail author
Reference work entry


Driven by an intensification of neoliberalism within the UK political system over the last 45 years, crucial reforms to social security have had a compounding effect on the poorest. In more recent neoliberal times, ideological austerity has progressed hand in hand with political welfare conditionality, as the poorest suffer further demonstrable hardship. Acting as a residual welfare safety net, emergency food aid has become normalized within the UK and recognized as an accepted part of necessary welfare reforms. However, hidden beneath the wave of rising food bank use lies an opaque deepness, obscuring the true extent of UK hunger evident on multiple political and social levels.


In Britain, we like to think that food poverty is something that happens in far off places. (Lang 2001: viii)

It is Professor Tim Lang’s foreword in Poverty Bites by Dowler, Turner, and Dobson (2001) which encapsulates the once held belief that hunger would not be something readily...

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Copyright information

© Springer Nature Switzerland AG 2020

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.School of Health and SocietyThe University of SalfordSalford, Greater ManchesterUK

Section editors and affiliations

  • Tony Wall
    • 1
  1. 1.International Centre for ThrivingUniversity of ChesterChesterUK