Spoilt MPs are enjoying cheaper and cheaper steak dinners while foodbank use is at an all-time high.
Taxpayers spent £9.1 million in the past year subsidising the House of Commons restaurant – which boasts dishes like oven -roasted guinea fowl, seared tuna steak and Earl Grey smoked tofu.
The cost to MPs for plush lunches is going down year by year, while the amount the public pays to keep the restaurant
running increases steadily, figures show.
For this calendar year, a steak and fries dish, described as “chargrilled rib-eye steak with roasted shallots, mushrooms, grilled tomato and French fries served with your choice of hollandaise, béarnaise or green pepper sauce” cost an MP just £11.26.
In 2020 and 2019 the same dish would have cost £12.87.
A pizza dropped in price by more than a pound from last year, meaning MPs – on a basic salary of £81,932 – are able to save their money, while the taxpayer forks out the highest amount of subsidy ever.
In 2019/20, the taxpayer contributed £4.6million towards the catering services, while in 2018/19 the sum was £2.6million.
The plummeting prices for MPs come at the same time as the UK food industry warns of a “terrifying” rise in costs amid worker shortages and supply chain issues.
MPs were warned last week by food chiefs that they need to “seriously think about inflation” and its effects.
Ian Wright, boss of the Food and Drink Federation, said: “In hospitality, inflation is running between 14 and 18%, which
“If the prime minister is serious about levelling up, inflation is a bigger scourge than almost anything because it discriminates against the poor.”
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Heavily-discounted meals for MPs are in stark contrast to the rest of the country.
The Trussell Trust, the UK’s leading food bank charity, urged the Government to look outside its own walls
after a record number of emergency food parcels were given to families this past year.
Emma Revie, the charity’s chief, said: “No-one should face the indignity of needing emergency food.”
A House of Commons spokesman said increased running costs were due to restaurant sales being hit by lockdown.