• Number of the Week: 6,600,000,000

    It would cost PLN 6.6 billion (1.35 billion euro) a year to give all three million schoolchildren in Poland one hot meal a day, according to a motion filed in parliament last month by left-wing parties calling for the change.

    “Today, around 900,000 children in Poland live in poverty. These children often attend lessons on an empty stomach,” say advocates of the motion.  

    Amid heated debate coloured by comparisons with the communist era, some commentators have criticised the idea of providing free meals for all children regardless of financial background, while others reply that the idea is to avoid stigmatising poorer pupils. 

    And the cost? 0.2 percent of GDP. “Not much,” they say.

    This article is part of the "The bitter taste of rising food prices" edition
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