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Food security is a complex area that is assessed using a wide variety of metrics. The most recent assessment of domestic food security was published in the Government’s UK Food Security Report in December 2021. While it concluded the UK food system has proven resilient and sufficiently diverse to absorb shocks, the report highlighted areas of dependence that could pose risks to food security, such as reliance on energy imports. 

Food supply chains have been under pressure recently due to COVID-19, labour shortages, climate change, and an increase in oil and gas prices, all of which have contributed to a rise in food prices. These problems have been exacerbated by the Ukraine conflict which has led to restrictions on two of the world’s most significant exporters of foodstuffs and fertilisers. Food prices have risen significantly in the UK since the end of 2021, which particularly affects poorer households. However, the Government does not believe that the UK will see reduced availability of food. 

Global food insecurity, already a problem before the conflict, could be made worse by the conflict: many poorer areas of the world rely on Russia and Ukraine for food imports. 

A Government food strategy is expected to be published in May in response to the National Food Strategy. 

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