The cost of living in the UK has been rapidly rising and has reached new heights in 2022. The global economy is reeling still from the covid pandemic, and costs across the board have reached an all time high.
Even basic goods carry a premium, inflated by post-Brexit/covid transport traumas, and the war in Ukraine. Taxation is at an all-time high on addictive goods like tobacco and alcohol and the poorest communities are feeling the hit more than others.
One of the most notable increases to the cost of living has been the increase in energy costs and most recently mortgage rates. Gas and electricity are costing more than ever before and only through recent government action has the relentless price hiking been capped, albeit not indefinitely.
Faced with a decision to choose between heating or eating, Kwasi Kwarteng’s controversial mini budget has done little to alleviate concerns amongst the UK’s most vulnerable communities. The reality is now being faced with winter around the corner, that many families will be left cold for long periods of time.
Cautious Consumers are Looking to Save Money
It has already been reported that discount retailer Aldi has seen a surge in custom as the economic crisis deepens. In fact, it has overtaken Morrisons to become the UK’s 4th largest supermarket chain – disrupting the age old hierarchy of the ‘big 4’ in the UK.
People are looking to substitute many of their favourite brands from cost-effective alternatives. It would not be surprising to learn that many people are also looking to quit smoking in an attempt to reduce household costs.
Thankfully for LiQuid Customers, our e-liquids are £1, making them some of the cheapest e-liquid on the market. We don’t have any plans to change that either, no matter what the economy throws at us – so if nothing else, vapers have somewhere to turn for cost-effective, premium quality vaping products.
Cold Homes Risk Children’s Health
Health experts have warned that cold homes will damage children’s lungs, impact brain development and could even lead to premature death. This was the conclusion found by Sir Michael Marmot, the director of University College London’s Institute of Health Equity, and Professor Ian Sinha, a respiratory consultant at Liverpool’s Alder Hey children’s hospital.
Sinha said he had ‘no doubt’ that children’s lives would be lost this winter in the face of the crisis, although the exact number would be challenging to predict accurately. For others, the lingering impact of surviving the winter could lead many to develop chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD), emphysema and bronchitis in adulthood.
At a time when the UK government is pushing hard to reduce smoking rates because of, among many other things, the pressure these health problems place on the NHS - it is a losing battle if generations of children develop with these same issues, having potentially never smoked.
This grim prediction comes as the Resolution Foundation thinktank predicts Britain is facing the deepest living standards squeeze in a century. A typical household is losing £3,000 in real-terms income over two years, inflation hitting 15% for the poorest households, and the cost of living crisis lasting into 2024.
In the UK, 45 million people are forecast to face fuel poverty by January 2023, and Marmot and Sinha said “millions of children’s development will be blighted” with lung damage, “toxic stress” that will affect brain development, and deepening educational inequalities as children struggle to keep up with schoolwork in freezing homes.
Clare Bambra, a professor of public health at Newcastle University, said the cost of living crisis was on course to become a public health crisis “potentially surpassing the pandemic”. She said: “The impacts of rising fuel poverty will be particularly felt in the north – as we have an older population and higher rates of deprivation.”
There are plans in place to try and curb the risks being faced by UK residents, however only time will tell how effective they are. As a budget-conscious vaping retailer, our Corporate social responsibility policy includes a promise to act in our customers best interests. As such we will continue to report on the cost of living crisis as it evolves to ensure our customers get the facts they need to navigate these difficult times.