// Lidl plans to increase the value of Healthy Start Vouchers issued to parents
// The initiative is supported by Marcus Rashford’s Child Food Poverty Task Force
// From January 4 until the end of March 2021, Lidl will top up the value of the vouchers
Lidl has announced plans to increase the value of Healthy Start Vouchers issued to parents in England and Wales from £3.10 to £4.25.
The retailer’s investment is supported by the Child Food Poverty Task Force, formed and spearheaded by footballer Marcus Rashford.
From January 4 until the end of March 2021, the discounter will be topping up the value of the existing Healthy start vouchers by £1.15, providing eligible families with more to spend in stores.
The vouchers will allow families that utilise the scheme to buy a range of healthy products outlined by the government including fresh, tinned, and frozen fruit, vegetables, and pulses, as well as milk, formula and vitamins
Lidl said the Healthy Start top-up initiative is the first of its kind across all UK retailers and builds on the work of Rashford’s Task Force who successfully lobbied the government to increase the value of the Healthy Start vouchers from April of next year.
It said it will invest up to £1 million to plug the gap between January 2021 and the planned government increase in the value of the vouchers to £4.25 in April 2021.
“At Lidl, we know that it has been a challenging year for families and budgets are tight,” Lidl chief executive Christian Härtnagel said.
“We all have a role to play within the community and we are committed to helping these families in any way we can.
“This is why we have decided to bring forward the planned increase to the value of the Healthy Start vouchers across all our stores in England and Wales.
“We hope that it will enable parents up and down the country to access more healthy essentials to help feed their children.”
Rashford: “I’m delighted that Lidl has made such a positive move and committed to increasing the value of Healthy Start vouchers.
“This was one of our Taskforce’s key asks and will make a huge difference to the most vulnerable people in our communities.
“We were thrilled when the government committed to increasing the value of Healthy Start vouchers from April next year, however there is an urgent need to act now.
“Lidl’s decision to take action and support families and those in need further demonstrates what can be achieved when we work together. I would encourage all parents and families that need that extra support to sign up to the government’s scheme.”
Lidl also revealed its new ‘Teaming up to Tackle Hunger’ scheme, which will make it easier for customers to donate directly to their local community through the use vouchers – with the retailer matching every donation made until December 16.
The initiative forms part of Lidl’s ongoing ‘Feed it Back’ programme, which has seen Lidl donate over six million meals to an existing network of 2400 local charities.