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MINIMUM ESSENTIAL BUDGET STANDARDS HEALTHY FOOD FOR ALL 20 TH NOVEMBER 2013 Vincentian Partnership for Social Justice PROJECT TEAM DirectorDr Bernadette.

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Presentation on theme: "MINIMUM ESSENTIAL BUDGET STANDARDS HEALTHY FOOD FOR ALL 20 TH NOVEMBER 2013 Vincentian Partnership for Social Justice PROJECT TEAM DirectorDr Bernadette."— Presentation transcript:

1 MINIMUM ESSENTIAL BUDGET STANDARDS HEALTHY FOOD FOR ALL 20 TH NOVEMBER 2013 Vincentian Partnership for Social Justice PROJECT TEAM DirectorDr Bernadette Mac Mahon D.C. Research AssociateGráinne Weld Research AssociateRobert Thornton &

2 Vincentian Partnership for Social Justice The VPSJ was established in 1996 to work for social and economic change tackling poverty and exclusion. Four Partners: The Society of St. Vincent de Paul The Daughters of Charity The Sisters of the Holy Faith The Vincentian Congregation &

3 Vincentian Partnership for Social Justice Two main approaches to achieve our goal 1. Active citizenship / voter education programme with communities alienated from the electoral democratic process: ‘Your vote is your voice’ 2. Development of facts and figures on Minimum Essential Budget Standards for household types in Ireland &

4 Minimum Essential Budget Standards Methodology Some simple questions = focus of this research  What is a basic standard of living?  How much does it cost?  How much income do you need to afford this? &

5 What is a Minimum Essential Standard of Living (MESL)? Derived from negotiated consensus on what households believe is a minimum. It is a standard of living which meets individual’s/household’s physical, psychological and social needs. &

6 What is a Minimum Essential Standard of Living (MESL)? Cont’d Expenditure: A Minimum Essential Standard of Living (MESL) is calculated by identifying the goods and services required by different household types in order to meet their minimum needs. Income: A Minimum Income Standard is the income required in order to achieve a minimum essential standard of living. &

7 What does it Include? 16 Areas of Expenditure Goods and services priced in shops and providers identified by Focus Groups FoodClothingPersonal CareHealth Costs Household Goods Household Services Housing (rent)Communications Social Inclusion & Participation TransportHousehold FuelChildcare Insurance CostsEducationPersonal CostsSavings & Contingencies &

8 The Household Types Covered in the Research (Urban & Rural)  Families with children: Two Parent & One Parent households ( 1- 4 children)  Adults of working age, living alone  Pensioner couple households  Pensioners living alone  Cohabiting couple of working age, no children &

9 EXPENDITURE Establishing the Expenditure To establish the expenditure 3 focus groups are held for each household type to decide what is needed for a minimum standard of living Negotiated consensus on goods & services to be included in the baskets (approx 2000 items) Experts are consulted in order to ensure that the negotiated consensus meets basic criteria e.g. nutritional standards Focus is on needs, not wants &

10  Include People from different socio-economic backgrounds (8 – 12 people per focus group). Focus Group work preceded by orientation meeting. 3 different focus groups for each household type: Focus Group 1: Produces an agreed list of items Focus Group 2: Reviews work of 1 st group – reach consensus Focus Group 3: Rechecks items in each category Study total costs for each category Reaches final consensus Focus Groups &

11 Construction of the Food Basket Consensus on a Minimum Acceptable Standard of Living Discussion of the Food Pyramid Maintain Food Diaries Construction of food menus for each day of the week &

12 Construction of the Food Basket (Cont’d) Development of the shopping list Pricing of the items in shops identified by focus groups Evaluation of the food basket by Nutrition Experts &

13 INCOME The Income Needed to Afford Expenditure The expenditure establishes the benchmark of what household types need. From this the income need of household types can be examined Social Welfare Where household types are solely dependent on social welfare, e.g. unemployed and pensioners, the adequacy of the household’s total social welfare income is measured against the household’s expenditure need &

14 Income (Cont’d) Employment – National Minimum Wage (NMW) Total household income when earning the NMW is calculated, including tax liability and any social welfare entitlement (e.g. Family Income Supplement). The adequacy of this income is measured against the household’s expenditure need. &

15 Income (Cont’d) Minimum Income Standard (MIS) When the National Minimum Wage is inadequate the household’s MIS is calculated. This is the gross income a household needs in order to afford a minimum standard of living. It takes account of the potential tax liability and social welfare entitlements of the household in question. &

16 Household Expenditure on Food (Urban) Examples of Social Welfare Dependent Households 2013 Weekly Two Parents, baby, 3 & 10 One Parent, 10 & 15 Single Adult of Working Age Pensioner Living Alone Expenditure€573.23€445.81€344.90€ Income€494.12€323.37€278.00€ Shortfall- €79.16€ €66.90-€18.86 Weekly Spend on Food €158.35€123.24€57.92€70.29 % of Income Spent on Food 32%38.1%20.8%29.7% &

17 Previous Research 2000 One Long Struggle – A Study of Low Income Households 2004 Low Cost but Acceptable Budget Standards for Three Households 2006 Minimum Essential Budgets for Six Households Types (Urban) 2008 Minimum Essential Budgets for Six Households Types – Changes during the Period Minimum Essential Budgets for Six Rural Households Types 2012 A Minimum Income Standard for Ireland 2012 Minimum Income Standard Calculator (www.MISc.ie)www.MISc.ie 2012 The Cost of a Child 2012 Review of Contents of the Expenditure Areas – Baskets &

18 The Food Basket The food baskets are examined by a nutritionist. Based on needs, not wants. The food basket is tailored to each particular household Food items are priced in stores identified by focus groups, the majority of food is bought in Aldi. Meat is bought in a butcher ‘Own Brand’ products purchased  Food Categories: Fruit and Vegetables; Groceries; Meat; Milk & Bread; Other &

19 & Example of Food Items ItemBrandRetailerUnit PriceQuantityLifespanWeekly Cost Jam (454g) Grandessa Aldi€ weeks€0.25 Tin of Tuna (185g) Ocean Rise Aldi€ week€1.18 Wheetabix (36 pack) Harvest Morn Aldi€ weeks€0.70 The cost of the item is divided by the number of weeks it is expected to last to ascertain the weekly cost

20 Example of a Menu for a Household 2 adults and 2 children aged 10 & 15 BreakfastMid- Morning Lunch 4 x 30gr bowl of rice krispies with 4 x 200ml of milk 7 slices of brown wholemeal bread, toasted with small portion of flora ( 2per adult, 2 per for 15 yr old, 1 for 10 yr old) 4 x 200ml glass of orange juice 2 x cup of tea with 35ml of milk 4 x medium size pears 2 x cup of tea/coffee with 35ml of milk 4 x 2 slices of brown wholemeal bread (2 per household member) with cheese, turkey, portion of coleslaw and small portion of flora 2 x 200ml glass of diluted orange 2 x cup of tea/coffee and 35ml of milk &

21 Household Menu (Cont’d) Mid AfternoonDinnerEvening Snack 4 x 2 plain biscuits 4 x medium size oranges 2 x 200ml glass of diluted orange 2 x cup of tea/coffee with 35ml of milk 4 x beef stew with portion of carrots, portion of onions, portion of broccoli and 7 medium size boiled potatoes (two each for parents and 15 yr old, 1 for 10 yr old) 4 x 200ml glass of milk 4 x white scones with small portion of flora and jam 2 slices of white bread, toasted with slice of ham and small portion of flora (15 year old) 2 x 200ml of warm milk with coco 2 x cup of tea with 35ml of milk &

22 The Cost of a Child Four distinct child ages in the research: Infancy; Pre-school; Primary School and Second Level Figures show the direct cost of a child as part of a household The cost of a child varies considerably by age &

23 The Cost of a Child 2013 (Urban) 2013 InfantPre-school Primary School Second Level Direct Weekly Cost* €90.89€54.84€88.19€ Weekly Expenditure on Food €31.25€24.26€37.48€49.82 Food as a % of Expenditure 34.4%44.2%42.9%36.2% * The direct weekly cost of a child, excluding childcare and entitlement to secondary benefits such as a medical card &

24 Further Information &


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