Section 6: Food Poverty


Table 6.1

Leeds Apr – Mar 2017-18 Apr – Mar 2016-17 Apr – Mar 2015-16 Jan 1st – Dec 31st 2014* 2016/17-2017/18 annual change
No %
Number of times people have benefitted from Foodbanks 27,902 26,831 25,168 20,306 1,071 +4.3%
Number of meals given out from Drop ins and Street Outreaches. 81,024 60,474 54,546 56,481 20,550 +37.7%
*2014 data is not available at the same 12 month period for an exact annual comparison; however this table provides an indication of annual demand for emergency food provision across Leeds.

Source: Leeds Food Aid Network (FAN), January 2019

Leeds FAN helps bring different people, initiatives and institutions together who are involved in tackling food poverty in Leeds. There are 6 foodbanks covering 23 distribution centres. To add to this there are 11 drop ins / soup kitchens, 10 Street Outreaches, 2 specialised services providing food for Asylum seekers / Refugees, a number of informal parish pantries and certain forms of Social Enterprise run on a community café/pay as you feel model e.g. The Real Junk Food Project.

A number of partners including Leeds City Council, Leeds Community Foundation, Street Games, FareShare Yorkshire and the Real Junk Food Project worked together in 2018 to provide 39 Healthy Holiday Projects in Leeds which provided food alongside games and activities to help tackle social isolation and food insecurity amongst children.

FareShare Yorkshire – part of Leeds FAN – prioritises getting food distributed to where it is needed using the skills, abilities and resources originally set up by the national organisation FareShare UK.  FareShare takes surplus food from the food industry and distributes it fairly to different food aid providers.  Latest figures reveal:

  • 27,902 people have accessed a foodbank in 2017/18. This is a 4.3% increase on 2016/17.
  • 81,024 meals were given out through a drop in or through Street Outreach. Food provision via this route increased by almost 40% from 60,474 in 2016/17.