Food is always making headlines but 2020 it seemed to dominate in a way I don’t remember experiencing before.
Here are some of the topics which came up (and I’ve linked a few articles in case you have time on your hands!):
- Food shortages – shops limiting pasta purchases, shops running out of frozen veg
- Sourdough! Need I say more! I looked up news articles for sourdough and virtually every news outlet you can think of has an article on how to make sourdough.
- The boring old sandwich. With office workers working from home, the sandwich seemed a little mundane so seemed to get bumped off the menu this year by lots of people. For others, it became the go to without the cafe workers making lunch for them, it was an easy option.
- Food poverty – free school meals and food banks, children going hungry. Marcus Rashford‘s work
- And on the flip side how much weight we had put in during lockdown
- Snacking habits and alcohol consumption
- Supermarket workers and our lorry drivers becoming recognised as key workers. And hats off too them. We are grateful.
- The importance of food for our immune systems
- Cafes closing, opening, closing and remaining closed…
- Brexit food bills (well the very important Agricultural Bill seemed to fly under the radar – unless you read farming newspapers – when arguably it should have made national headlines).
- Ports being closed because of the new variant and potential shortages of fresh produce.
Why do I think there were so many?
Because we all need to eat. Pandemic or no pandemic, we need to eat to survive. For some the lockdown meant the focus on food because it wasn’t clear where the next meal was coming from. For others what to eat suddenly became the only way to differentiate between the days. For others they had more time to cook or were not in the office close to a café where they could just grab lunch.
Food is a leveller, a common understanding. It is a bit like talking about the weather – we can all understand it from one angle or the other.
The key learning for us all
• Food is essential and we have a collective responsibility to ensure everyone has food to eat
• We all have different food experiences
• We are all in the same storm but very different boats