More than 150,000 emergency food parcels were handed out to hungry people across Hertfordshire in the last year – according to a leading charity.

The Trussell Trust distributed a “record number” of three-day food bundles to people in the county who are in crisis prompting a member of the European Parliament to speak out.

East of England MEP Alex Mayer raised the issue in the European Parliament calling for an end to “poverty wages”.

The Trussell Trust charity, who support a nationwide network of foodbanks including Watford, reported handing out 156,081 emergency three-day food parcels in the East of England in the last year.

Last year, Watford Foodbank saw its demand double since 2017, attributing some of the increase to Universal Credit.

Watford Observer:

Watford Foodbank volunteer Hilda Boness

Ms Mayer said: “How depressing that it’s another record-breaking year for foodbanks. No one can doubt the generosity of Hertfordshire people, but this is no way for a country to run.

“I don’t want to see any more dramatic rises in foodbank use, I want to see dramatic changes to the economy, an end to poverty wages and changes to the welfare system.

“No one should be forced to turn to foodbanks to survive. In one of the richest countries in the world people should have the dignity of financial security.”

Watford Observer:

Watford Foodbank Andrew Tranter