'It will only get harder': breakfast the first meal to go when times are tough

NOT FULL: Missing breakfast helps stretch the weekly food budget further, says FoodCare’s Anne Hopwood.

NOT FULL: Missing breakfast helps stretch the weekly food budget further, says FoodCare’s Anne Hopwood.

FOR many families doing it tough, missing breakfast helps stretch the weekly food budget further, says FoodCare’s Anne Hopwood.

The FoodCare volunteer co-ordinator says about 160 Orange families use the service to purchase essential groceries at reduced prices.

She said many people chose to skip their morning meal to ensure they had enough food for lunch and dinner.

“I’m sure this is happening even though nutritionists tell us breakfast is the most important meal of the day,” she said.

“All of our customers are finding it hard to balance their budgets and cook nutritious meals, and as the cost of utilities increase it will only get harder.”

Mrs Hopwood said when a FoodCare customer was planning their weekly budget, with a limited amount of funds at their disposal, the easiest thing to do was to cut down on food.

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Mrs Hopwood believes the number of people in need of FooCare’s service is much higher than its clientele.

“We believed there are many, many more customers out there who just don’t know about the service,” she said.

The statewide charity Foodbank NSW, which provides enough low-cost food to produce 5.3 million meals a year, currently has a shortage of breakfast foods. 

“With the cost of living in NSW continuing to rise we are seeing a surge in the need for food relief especially breakfast foods,” Foodbank NSW business development manager Tony Gatt said.

“Our stocks of basic breakfast staples such as cereal, baked beans and milk are extremely low. With winter just around the corner that’s a real concern,” he said.

“Without a proper breakfast it’s hard to face the day.”

FoodCare is open every Tuesday from 9.30am to 12.30pm  at the Glenroi Community Centre in Garema Road.

tracey.prisk@fairfaxmedia.com.au

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