Almost a dozen neighbourhoods in North Shropshire are among those in England where people are most likely to struggle to access affordable food, a study suggests.

Millions of households are feeling the pinch at the tills this winter, as the soaring cost of fuel has a knock-on effect on everyday essentials.

In response, researchers from the University of Leeds and the consumer champion Which? have created an index ranking areas on how likely they are to need support to access affordable and healthy food.

In North Shropshire, 10 of the constituency's 68 neighbourhoods were ranked as within the worst 20% for food affordability across England.


The index combined factors such as the number of households on low income, proximity to large supermarkets, the number of children on free school meals, and the availability of online deliveries, to assess which areas were the most in need of access to healthy, reasonably-priced food.

Michelle Morris, associate professor at the University of Leeds, said: “With so many people in the UK already suffering from food insecurity and the cost-of-living crisis making that much worse, we need to do all that we can to support those most in need to access affordable, healthy and sustainable foods."

Which? has now launched an "affordable food for all" campaign.

Figures from the Office for National Statistics show the price of food and non-alcoholic drinks rose by 16.2% in the 12 months to October – which it estimates to be the highest rate since 1980.

The Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs said that food prices are set independently by retailers, and that vulnerable families were receiving Government support for energy bills and other costs.