An investigation into the prevalence and people’s experience of ‘food poverty’ within a region of Northern Ireland: Secondary analysis of local authority data

Sinead Furey, Christopher McLaughlin, Amy Burns, Lynsey Hollywood, Pearl Mahon

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingConference contribution

Abstract

Purpose: Food poverty (lack of access to an adequate quantity and quality of nutritionally satisfactory food) is becoming recognised as a public health emergency. No research study in Northern Ireland (NI) has considered food purchasing habits with social exclusion. Amidst calls for the routine collection and analysis of data to determine the extent of food poverty, this study investigates the existence and experience of food poverty in a local authority area, seeking to determine the affordability, accessibility and nutritional adequacy of food, and the social impacts of food poverty. Additionally, data were analysed to understand the possibility of categorising respondents by their reported affordability of various products/services. Methods: A household questionnaire was administered within a region of NI measuring the affordability and accessibility of food, and the social impacts of food poverty. Completed surveys (N=362) were analysed (SPSS and MPlus). Additionally, Latent Class Analysis (LCA) was used as a person-centred approach to identify a possible number of distinct groups within the sample data.Results/findings: Findings indicated that food affordability and accessibility proved important points of concern. Two in five (41%) respondents reported being unable to always comfortably feed themselves and their families three meals per day, and three in ten (31%) reported being forced to make a choice between food and other essentials. More than half (54%) reported some anxiety about whether their budget would fulfil their food needs. Almost half (46%) reported concern about the food they eat: 56% were wary that their diets were not healthy; 20% worried about poor diet quality; and 16% lamented the lack of variety. An important minority (13% – 40%) cited their inability to afford social activities that peers may take for granted. LCA analysed seven measures of affordability compared against a distal outcome of missing meals. A three-class solution was reported: Afforders (least likely to miss a meal) (58.38%); Budgeters (25.14%); and Non-Afforders (more likely to miss a meal) (16.48%). Conclusions: Policy makers and practitioners should consider these perspectives in devising evidence-informed and meaningfully-targeted interventions, while efforts must be ongoing to address the structural causes of food poverty for a truly sustainable solution.
LanguageEnglish
Title of host publicationUnknown Host Publication
Number of pages1
Publication statusAccepted/In press - 22 Feb 2017
EventISBNPA 2017 Annual Meeting - Victoria, Canada
Duration: 22 Feb 2017 → …

Conference

ConferenceISBNPA 2017 Annual Meeting
Period22/02/17 → …

Fingerprint

Northern Ireland
Poverty
Food
Meals
Social Change
Diet
Feeding Behavior
Budgets
Administrative Personnel

Keywords

  • Deprivation
  • food poverty
  • latent class analysis
  • poverty
  • social exclusion

Cite this

@inproceedings{736a54fe10af4a509f42267ea6e73667,
title = "An investigation into the prevalence and people’s experience of ‘food poverty’ within a region of Northern Ireland: Secondary analysis of local authority data",
abstract = "Purpose: Food poverty (lack of access to an adequate quantity and quality of nutritionally satisfactory food) is becoming recognised as a public health emergency. No research study in Northern Ireland (NI) has considered food purchasing habits with social exclusion. Amidst calls for the routine collection and analysis of data to determine the extent of food poverty, this study investigates the existence and experience of food poverty in a local authority area, seeking to determine the affordability, accessibility and nutritional adequacy of food, and the social impacts of food poverty. Additionally, data were analysed to understand the possibility of categorising respondents by their reported affordability of various products/services. Methods: A household questionnaire was administered within a region of NI measuring the affordability and accessibility of food, and the social impacts of food poverty. Completed surveys (N=362) were analysed (SPSS and MPlus). Additionally, Latent Class Analysis (LCA) was used as a person-centred approach to identify a possible number of distinct groups within the sample data.Results/findings: Findings indicated that food affordability and accessibility proved important points of concern. Two in five (41{\%}) respondents reported being unable to always comfortably feed themselves and their families three meals per day, and three in ten (31{\%}) reported being forced to make a choice between food and other essentials. More than half (54{\%}) reported some anxiety about whether their budget would fulfil their food needs. Almost half (46{\%}) reported concern about the food they eat: 56{\%} were wary that their diets were not healthy; 20{\%} worried about poor diet quality; and 16{\%} lamented the lack of variety. An important minority (13{\%} – 40{\%}) cited their inability to afford social activities that peers may take for granted. LCA analysed seven measures of affordability compared against a distal outcome of missing meals. A three-class solution was reported: Afforders (least likely to miss a meal) (58.38{\%}); Budgeters (25.14{\%}); and Non-Afforders (more likely to miss a meal) (16.48{\%}). Conclusions: Policy makers and practitioners should consider these perspectives in devising evidence-informed and meaningfully-targeted interventions, while efforts must be ongoing to address the structural causes of food poverty for a truly sustainable solution.",
keywords = "Deprivation, food poverty, latent class analysis, poverty, social exclusion",
author = "Sinead Furey and Christopher McLaughlin and Amy Burns and Lynsey Hollywood and Pearl Mahon",
note = "Reference text: Advice NI Social Policy Report (2013) The Growth of Food Banks in Northern Ireland. Available from: http://www.adviceni.net/sites/default/files/publications/AdviceNI_Food_Banks_Policy_paper.pdf [Accessed 2 March 2016]. Burns, C. (2004) A review of the literature describing the link between poverty, food insecurity and obesity with specific reference to Australia. Australia: Victorian Health Promotion Foundation. Available from: http://secondbite.org/sites/default/files/A_review_of_the_literature_describing_the_link_between_poverty_food_insecurity_and_obesity_w.pdf [Accessed 30 March 2016]. Coates, J., Frongillo, E. A., Rogers, B. L., Webb, P., Wilde, P. E., and Houser, R. (2006) Commonalities in the experience of household food insecurity across cultures: what are measures missing? Journal of Nutrition, 136 (5), 1438-1448. Consumer Council. (2013) Hard to stomach: The impact of rising food costs for Northern Ireland consumers. Belfast: Consumer Council. Available from: http://www.consumercouncil.org.uk/filestore/documents/Hard_to_Stomach1.pdf. [Accessed 2 March 2016]. Cooper, N. and Dumpleton, S. (2013) Walking the breadline: The scandal of food poverty in 21st century Britain. London: Oxfam. Available from: http://policy-practice.oxfam.org.uk/publications/walking-the-breadline-the-scandal-of-food-poverty-in-21st-century-britain-292978 [Accessed 2 March 2016]. Cooper, N., Purcell, S. and Jackson, R. (2014) Below the breadline – the relentless rise of food poverty in Britain. London: Oxfam. Available from: http://policy-practice.oxfam.org.uk/publications/below-the-breadline-the-relentless-rise-of-food-poverty-in-britain-317730[Accessed 2 March 2016]. Department for Social Development (2014) NI Poverty Bulletin. Belfast: Department for Social Development. Food Standards Agency. (2014) The food and you survey: Northern Ireland bulletin 1 – Eating, cooking and shopping. Available from: http://www.food.gov.uk/sites/default/files/ni-bulletin-1-food-and-you-2014.pdf [Accessed 5 July 2016]. Friel, S. and Conlon, C. (2004) Food poverty and policy. Dublin; Combat Poverty Agency. Available from: http://www.combatpoverty.ie/publications/FoodPovertyAndPolicy_2004.pdf [Accesed 15 March 2016]. Garc{\'i}a-Germ{\'a}n, S., Bardaj{\'i}, I. and Garrido, A. (2010) Analysis of food deprivation in the EU under food prices volatility and rise: Scientific paper No. 10. ULYSSES project, EU 7th Framework Programme, Project 312182 KBBE.2012.1.4-05. Madrid: Universidad Polit{\'e}cnica de Madrid. Available from: http://www.fp7-ulysses.eu/publications/ULYSSES{\%}20Scientific{\%}20Paper{\%}2010_Analysis{\%}20of{\%}20food{\%}20deprivation{\%}20in{\%}20the{\%}20EU{\%}20under{\%}20food{\%}20prices{\%}20volatility{\%}20and{\%}20rise.pdf [Accessed 2 March 2016]. Griffith, R., O’Connell, M. and Smith, K. (2015) Food expenditure and nutritional quality over the great recession. London: Institute for Fiscal Studies. Available from: http://www.ifs.org.uk/bns/bn143.pdf [Accessed 7 March 2016]. Hardy, B. (2013) Income instability and the response of the safety net. Washington: American University. Available from: https://spea.indiana.edu/doc/research/finance-conference/hardy_income-instability.pdf [Accessed: 2 March 2016]. Harvey, K. (2016) When I go to bed hungry and sleep, I’m not hungry: Children’s and parents’ experiences of food insecurity. Appetite, 99 (2), 235-244. Hope, K. (2014) The death of the weekly supermarket shop. Available from: http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/business-29442383 [Accessed 30 July 2015]. Northern Ireland Executive (2015b) Health Survey Northern Ireland 2014/15. Available from: http://www.northernireland.gov.uk/news-dhssps-111115-health-survey-northern?WT.mc_id=rss-news [Accessed 22 February 2016]. Kirkpatrick, S. L. and Tarasuk, V. (2008) Food insecurity is associated with nutrient inadequacies among Canadian adults and adolescents. Journal of Nutrition, 138 (3), 604-612. Lambie-Mumford, H. and Dowler, E. (2014) Rising use of food aid in the United Kingdom. British Food Journal, 116 (6), 1418-1425. Levitas, R., Pantazis, C., Fahmy, E., Gordon, D., Lloyd, E., and Patsios, D. (2007) The multi-dimensional analysis of social exclusion. Bristol: International Study of Poverty and Bristol Institute for Public Affairs University of Bristol. Available from: http://webarchive.nationalarchives.gov.uk/+/http:/www.cabinetoffice.gov.uk/media/cabinetoffice/social_exclusion_task_force/assets/research/multidimensional.pdf. Accessed 21 July 2016. Malsen, C., Raffle, A., Marriot, S. and Smith, N. (2013) Food poverty: What does the evidence tell us? Bristol: Bristol City Council. Available from: http://bristolfoodpolicycouncil.org/wp-content/uploads/2013/08/Food-Poverty-Report-July-2013-for-publication.pdf [Accessed 2 March 2016]. O’Connor, N., Farag, K. and Baines, R. (2016) What is food poverty? A conceptual framework. British Food Journal, 118 (2), 429-449. Office for National Statistics. (2015) Family spending 2015 – A report on the living costs and food survey 2014. London: Office for National Statistics. Available from: http://www.ons.gov.uk/peoplepopulationandcommunity/personalandhouseholdfinances/incomeandwealth/compendium/familyspending/2015 [accessed 27/03/16]. Safefood, Consumer Council and Food Standards Agency in NI. (2015) The cost of a healthy food basket: Pilot study of two household types in Northern Ireland. Dublin: Safefood. Available from: http://www.safefood.eu/SafeFood/media/SafeFoodLibrary/Documents/Publications/Research{\%}20Reports/The-Cost-of-a-Minimum-Essential-Food-Basket-in-Northern-Ireland-09062015.pdf [Accessed 2 March 2016]. Taylor, A. and Loopstra, R. (2016) Too poor to eat: Food insecurity in the UK. London: Food Foundation. Available from: http://foodfoundation.org.uk/wp-content/uploads/2016/05/FoodInsecurityBriefing-May-2016-FINAL.pdf [Accessed 6 May 2016]. Taylor-Robinson, D., Rougeaux, E., Harrison, D., Witehead, M., Barr, B. and Pearce, A. (2013) The rise of food poverty in the UK. I; 347: f7157. Tomlinson, M., Hillyard, P. and Kelly, G. (2013) Child poverty in Northern Ireland: Results from the poverty and social exclusion study. Belfast: Queen’s University, Belfast. Available from: http://pure.qub.ac.uk/portal/en/publications/child-poverty-in-northern-ireland-results-from-the-poverty-and-social-exclusion-study(1dc541d8-c219-4728-8e68-a4cdb3991874).html [Accessed 2 March 2016].",
year = "2017",
month = "2",
day = "22",
language = "English",
booktitle = "Unknown Host Publication",

}

An investigation into the prevalence and people’s experience of ‘food poverty’ within a region of Northern Ireland: Secondary analysis of local authority data. / Furey, Sinead; McLaughlin, Christopher; Burns, Amy; Hollywood, Lynsey; Mahon, Pearl.

Unknown Host Publication. 2017.

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingConference contribution

TY - GEN

T1 - An investigation into the prevalence and people’s experience of ‘food poverty’ within a region of Northern Ireland: Secondary analysis of local authority data

AU - Furey, Sinead

AU - McLaughlin, Christopher

AU - Burns, Amy

AU - Hollywood, Lynsey

AU - Mahon, Pearl

N1 - Reference text: Advice NI Social Policy Report (2013) The Growth of Food Banks in Northern Ireland. Available from: http://www.adviceni.net/sites/default/files/publications/AdviceNI_Food_Banks_Policy_paper.pdf [Accessed 2 March 2016]. Burns, C. (2004) A review of the literature describing the link between poverty, food insecurity and obesity with specific reference to Australia. Australia: Victorian Health Promotion Foundation. Available from: http://secondbite.org/sites/default/files/A_review_of_the_literature_describing_the_link_between_poverty_food_insecurity_and_obesity_w.pdf [Accessed 30 March 2016]. Coates, J., Frongillo, E. A., Rogers, B. L., Webb, P., Wilde, P. E., and Houser, R. (2006) Commonalities in the experience of household food insecurity across cultures: what are measures missing? Journal of Nutrition, 136 (5), 1438-1448. Consumer Council. (2013) Hard to stomach: The impact of rising food costs for Northern Ireland consumers. Belfast: Consumer Council. Available from: http://www.consumercouncil.org.uk/filestore/documents/Hard_to_Stomach1.pdf. [Accessed 2 March 2016]. Cooper, N. and Dumpleton, S. (2013) Walking the breadline: The scandal of food poverty in 21st century Britain. London: Oxfam. Available from: http://policy-practice.oxfam.org.uk/publications/walking-the-breadline-the-scandal-of-food-poverty-in-21st-century-britain-292978 [Accessed 2 March 2016]. Cooper, N., Purcell, S. and Jackson, R. (2014) Below the breadline – the relentless rise of food poverty in Britain. London: Oxfam. Available from: http://policy-practice.oxfam.org.uk/publications/below-the-breadline-the-relentless-rise-of-food-poverty-in-britain-317730[Accessed 2 March 2016]. Department for Social Development (2014) NI Poverty Bulletin. Belfast: Department for Social Development. Food Standards Agency. (2014) The food and you survey: Northern Ireland bulletin 1 – Eating, cooking and shopping. Available from: http://www.food.gov.uk/sites/default/files/ni-bulletin-1-food-and-you-2014.pdf [Accessed 5 July 2016]. Friel, S. and Conlon, C. (2004) Food poverty and policy. Dublin; Combat Poverty Agency. Available from: http://www.combatpoverty.ie/publications/FoodPovertyAndPolicy_2004.pdf [Accesed 15 March 2016]. García-Germán, S., Bardají, I. and Garrido, A. (2010) Analysis of food deprivation in the EU under food prices volatility and rise: Scientific paper No. 10. ULYSSES project, EU 7th Framework Programme, Project 312182 KBBE.2012.1.4-05. Madrid: Universidad Politécnica de Madrid. Available from: http://www.fp7-ulysses.eu/publications/ULYSSES%20Scientific%20Paper%2010_Analysis%20of%20food%20deprivation%20in%20the%20EU%20under%20food%20prices%20volatility%20and%20rise.pdf [Accessed 2 March 2016]. Griffith, R., O’Connell, M. and Smith, K. (2015) Food expenditure and nutritional quality over the great recession. London: Institute for Fiscal Studies. Available from: http://www.ifs.org.uk/bns/bn143.pdf [Accessed 7 March 2016]. Hardy, B. (2013) Income instability and the response of the safety net. Washington: American University. Available from: https://spea.indiana.edu/doc/research/finance-conference/hardy_income-instability.pdf [Accessed: 2 March 2016]. Harvey, K. (2016) When I go to bed hungry and sleep, I’m not hungry: Children’s and parents’ experiences of food insecurity. Appetite, 99 (2), 235-244. Hope, K. (2014) The death of the weekly supermarket shop. Available from: http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/business-29442383 [Accessed 30 July 2015]. Northern Ireland Executive (2015b) Health Survey Northern Ireland 2014/15. Available from: http://www.northernireland.gov.uk/news-dhssps-111115-health-survey-northern?WT.mc_id=rss-news [Accessed 22 February 2016]. Kirkpatrick, S. L. and Tarasuk, V. (2008) Food insecurity is associated with nutrient inadequacies among Canadian adults and adolescents. Journal of Nutrition, 138 (3), 604-612. Lambie-Mumford, H. and Dowler, E. (2014) Rising use of food aid in the United Kingdom. British Food Journal, 116 (6), 1418-1425. Levitas, R., Pantazis, C., Fahmy, E., Gordon, D., Lloyd, E., and Patsios, D. (2007) The multi-dimensional analysis of social exclusion. Bristol: International Study of Poverty and Bristol Institute for Public Affairs University of Bristol. Available from: http://webarchive.nationalarchives.gov.uk/+/http:/www.cabinetoffice.gov.uk/media/cabinetoffice/social_exclusion_task_force/assets/research/multidimensional.pdf. Accessed 21 July 2016. Malsen, C., Raffle, A., Marriot, S. and Smith, N. (2013) Food poverty: What does the evidence tell us? Bristol: Bristol City Council. Available from: http://bristolfoodpolicycouncil.org/wp-content/uploads/2013/08/Food-Poverty-Report-July-2013-for-publication.pdf [Accessed 2 March 2016]. O’Connor, N., Farag, K. and Baines, R. (2016) What is food poverty? A conceptual framework. British Food Journal, 118 (2), 429-449. Office for National Statistics. (2015) Family spending 2015 – A report on the living costs and food survey 2014. London: Office for National Statistics. Available from: http://www.ons.gov.uk/peoplepopulationandcommunity/personalandhouseholdfinances/incomeandwealth/compendium/familyspending/2015 [accessed 27/03/16]. Safefood, Consumer Council and Food Standards Agency in NI. (2015) The cost of a healthy food basket: Pilot study of two household types in Northern Ireland. Dublin: Safefood. Available from: http://www.safefood.eu/SafeFood/media/SafeFoodLibrary/Documents/Publications/Research%20Reports/The-Cost-of-a-Minimum-Essential-Food-Basket-in-Northern-Ireland-09062015.pdf [Accessed 2 March 2016]. Taylor, A. and Loopstra, R. (2016) Too poor to eat: Food insecurity in the UK. London: Food Foundation. Available from: http://foodfoundation.org.uk/wp-content/uploads/2016/05/FoodInsecurityBriefing-May-2016-FINAL.pdf [Accessed 6 May 2016]. Taylor-Robinson, D., Rougeaux, E., Harrison, D., Witehead, M., Barr, B. and Pearce, A. (2013) The rise of food poverty in the UK. I; 347: f7157. Tomlinson, M., Hillyard, P. and Kelly, G. (2013) Child poverty in Northern Ireland: Results from the poverty and social exclusion study. Belfast: Queen’s University, Belfast. Available from: http://pure.qub.ac.uk/portal/en/publications/child-poverty-in-northern-ireland-results-from-the-poverty-and-social-exclusion-study(1dc541d8-c219-4728-8e68-a4cdb3991874).html [Accessed 2 March 2016].

PY - 2017/2/22

Y1 - 2017/2/22

N2 - Purpose: Food poverty (lack of access to an adequate quantity and quality of nutritionally satisfactory food) is becoming recognised as a public health emergency. No research study in Northern Ireland (NI) has considered food purchasing habits with social exclusion. Amidst calls for the routine collection and analysis of data to determine the extent of food poverty, this study investigates the existence and experience of food poverty in a local authority area, seeking to determine the affordability, accessibility and nutritional adequacy of food, and the social impacts of food poverty. Additionally, data were analysed to understand the possibility of categorising respondents by their reported affordability of various products/services. Methods: A household questionnaire was administered within a region of NI measuring the affordability and accessibility of food, and the social impacts of food poverty. Completed surveys (N=362) were analysed (SPSS and MPlus). Additionally, Latent Class Analysis (LCA) was used as a person-centred approach to identify a possible number of distinct groups within the sample data.Results/findings: Findings indicated that food affordability and accessibility proved important points of concern. Two in five (41%) respondents reported being unable to always comfortably feed themselves and their families three meals per day, and three in ten (31%) reported being forced to make a choice between food and other essentials. More than half (54%) reported some anxiety about whether their budget would fulfil their food needs. Almost half (46%) reported concern about the food they eat: 56% were wary that their diets were not healthy; 20% worried about poor diet quality; and 16% lamented the lack of variety. An important minority (13% – 40%) cited their inability to afford social activities that peers may take for granted. LCA analysed seven measures of affordability compared against a distal outcome of missing meals. A three-class solution was reported: Afforders (least likely to miss a meal) (58.38%); Budgeters (25.14%); and Non-Afforders (more likely to miss a meal) (16.48%). Conclusions: Policy makers and practitioners should consider these perspectives in devising evidence-informed and meaningfully-targeted interventions, while efforts must be ongoing to address the structural causes of food poverty for a truly sustainable solution.

AB - Purpose: Food poverty (lack of access to an adequate quantity and quality of nutritionally satisfactory food) is becoming recognised as a public health emergency. No research study in Northern Ireland (NI) has considered food purchasing habits with social exclusion. Amidst calls for the routine collection and analysis of data to determine the extent of food poverty, this study investigates the existence and experience of food poverty in a local authority area, seeking to determine the affordability, accessibility and nutritional adequacy of food, and the social impacts of food poverty. Additionally, data were analysed to understand the possibility of categorising respondents by their reported affordability of various products/services. Methods: A household questionnaire was administered within a region of NI measuring the affordability and accessibility of food, and the social impacts of food poverty. Completed surveys (N=362) were analysed (SPSS and MPlus). Additionally, Latent Class Analysis (LCA) was used as a person-centred approach to identify a possible number of distinct groups within the sample data.Results/findings: Findings indicated that food affordability and accessibility proved important points of concern. Two in five (41%) respondents reported being unable to always comfortably feed themselves and their families three meals per day, and three in ten (31%) reported being forced to make a choice between food and other essentials. More than half (54%) reported some anxiety about whether their budget would fulfil their food needs. Almost half (46%) reported concern about the food they eat: 56% were wary that their diets were not healthy; 20% worried about poor diet quality; and 16% lamented the lack of variety. An important minority (13% – 40%) cited their inability to afford social activities that peers may take for granted. LCA analysed seven measures of affordability compared against a distal outcome of missing meals. A three-class solution was reported: Afforders (least likely to miss a meal) (58.38%); Budgeters (25.14%); and Non-Afforders (more likely to miss a meal) (16.48%). Conclusions: Policy makers and practitioners should consider these perspectives in devising evidence-informed and meaningfully-targeted interventions, while efforts must be ongoing to address the structural causes of food poverty for a truly sustainable solution.

KW - Deprivation

KW - food poverty

KW - latent class analysis

KW - poverty

KW - social exclusion

M3 - Conference contribution

BT - Unknown Host Publication

ER -