Last Thursday my neighbor @ madrereciente ) I was going through Twitter a link via Gonzoo in which he realized the particular story of an admirable mother courage (with descent to the underworld and resurface included). It depicts the odyssey of a 25-year-old British single mom, Jack Monroe, and her 2-plus-year-old son, who have had a hard time regarding the economic issue. Without work, without money and resorting to the sale of no matter what of their belongings to deal with bills and the necessary food of their own and their child. Among other things.
Its history, unworthy in principle to receive special attention by the common of the same, has become an event to have used their anguish to publicize the low-cost food solutions that have applied, from the purchase of food to starting from offers, to how to cook them from genuine recipes, how to save on gas and electricity , and so on. And he told it in a blog that in a relatively short time has become a success of visits. A recognition of their dedication that has been reflected in awards for their activity as a blogger , in addition to having the opportunity to publish a book with their low-cost recipes (which will be released in February 2014) and to obtain a job as a reporter in newspaper.
From all this exemplary story what strikes me the most, and I suppose that to you too, is the affirmation of being able to feed your child and feed herself with a weekly budget of 11 euros . How is this possible? Could the same be done in Spain?
Spain is different (and not for the good precisely in this)
Without removing an apex to the merit that Jack has, I think that the circumstances that have made it possible to adjust both the budget are not the same as in Spain . I have not lived in the United Kingdom and therefore I do not have elements to ponder the different circumstances between Spain and the United Kingdom. However, I do have the testimony of people very close to me who have given me their opinion and their reasons to think that here this would not be possible or at least not at such a low cost . My partner at David Flores University, who has lived and worked for many years in the United Kingdom, tells me that the food price and offer policies in this country are completely different from the Spanish ones. Without going any further, there is common practice what is known as reduce to clear a sort of ” rebates for liquidation ” or rather ” bargains until they are over ” in which they put on sale authentic food offerings at a price symbolic , bordering on the ridiculous, those products that are about to expire or with the date of preferential consumption very close. In this way it is easy to find packs of mold bread at the price of 10 cents, fruit bagged to 15, perishable products (meats, fish, dairy, etc.) at almost negligible prices .
This is done so that you do not have to throw away food and so it does not involve extra logistics costs. In this way, my colleague tells me, it is not uncommon to see certain supermarket chains crowded with people at 10 o’clock at night (keep in mind the country we are talking about) collecting all these products that then freeze .
Because that is another, it is not only the country but also the culture. In the United Kingdom there is a “culture of the freezer” much more widespread than here, where we are much more reluctant to freeze food believing very often that these “lose property”
There is also the issue of the cost of rents, electricity and gas … nothing to do with the Spanish considerably more expensive (at least that’s what David tells me)
Finally, there is the issue of purchasing power , with considerable differences between both countries. David, who returned to Spain in 2008, tells me that he currently spends a much higher percentage of his current income in the shopping cart than what was spent in the UK 5 or even 10 years ago.
In short, and I insist that doing all possible appreciation to the work of Jack Monroe that has all my admiration , based on the basis that we have a culture quite wasteful . I refer to everything in general and the subject of food in particular. I am convinced that Jack, both in his blog and in his book and articles, can give us some useful ideas to try to make our resources more profitable , but I am somewhat skeptical when the limit is set at 11 euros per week in food for a mother and her son. And even more so when that budget includes feeding in a more or less healthy way.
And what do you think, where and how do you save, where is the lower weekly limit of spending to feed a family? For the moment I leave you with a video of yours (the truth is that these veggie burgers do not have any bad looks)