Children are suffering food poisoning because parents are turning off fridges to save money amid the cost of living crisis, a food bank says.
Truro Food Bank in Cornwall says kids are getting upset stomachs because mums and dads can’t afford to chill their food.
They also say children are having to attend schools in unwashed clothes as parents try to cut costs due to rising prices.
Staff at the food bank say donations have fallen and demand for food has risen – putting further strain on low income communities.
Truro Food Bank manager Simon Fann told the BBC: “[We have had] reports of children having upset stomachs, or, in worst cases, food poisoning because some parents are turning their fridges and freezers off overnight.
“The level of need we’re experiencing is now going up and outstripping the donations we’re getting at the moment.
“That might indicate that people who were able to donate are now struggling themselves.
“They’re not sure about their own food security and so perhaps can’t donate food in the way that they used to.”
The Energy Saving Trust said it did not recommend turning fridges or freezers off “for any amount of time”.
A spokesperson explained that they are “designed to be kept on all the time and it’s important for food safety reasons to store your food at the appropriate temperature”.