Edinburgh supermarket hosts promotion of Best Start Foods benefit

Social Security Scotland has teamed up with supermarket chain Asda to make sure people don’t miss out on money to help buy healthy food in their weekly shop.

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Asda at the Jewel hosted an event on Saturday to promote Best Start Foods and other benefits that offer financial support to eligible families with young children.

Best Start Foods is one of 12 benefits administered by Social Security Scotland and offers up to £36 every four weeks on a pre-paid card to buy healthy food for their families.

It is part of a package of five family payments which also includes the Scottish Child Payment and the three Best Start Grants: Pregnancy and Baby Payment, Early Learning Payment and School Age Payment.

Staff from Social Security Scotland set up a special stall at the store and were available to speak face-to-face with shoppers as well as handing out information on Best Start Foods and the five family payments.

Social Security Scotland chief executive David Wallace said: “The partnership with Asda is a great way for us to reach families while they shop and raise awareness about support they could be entitled to.

“Best Start Foods is there to provide help with the cost of healthy food in a family’s weekly shopping and we want to make it as easy as possible for people to access this financial support.

Social Security Scotland staff are using Asda supermarkets to promote the Best Start Foods benefit. Picture: Chris Scott.

“It’s very important for us to spread the word about Best Start Foods. So even if you’re not eligible yourself, you may know someone who is.”

Best Start Foods provides £18 every four weeks throughout pregnancy, £36 every four weeks from birth until a child turns one, then £18 every four weeks until a child turns three. The card can be used to buy healthy food, including eggs, milk, fruit, vegetables and pulses.

Pregnant women under 18 are eligible for Best Start Foods during pregnancy and up until their child turns one, whether or not they are receiving benefits. Applicants over 18 need to be in receipt of a qualifying benefit. At present, income thresholds also apply for some of these qualifying benefits. The income thresholds will be removed in 2023/24. At the same time, Best Start Foods will move to a cash payment instead of a pre-paid card.

Kevin McBride, Asda’s vice-president for Scotland, said: “We know times are tough for many families at the moment, and we want to do our bit to help make sure people are getting the support available to them. Asda is proud to partner with Social Security Scotland on this campaign, making it easy for our customers to access support as they do their shopping.”

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