Is the $27 cost of living payment enough to make cheese buns on a budget?

Budget 2022: The tradition of Budget Day cheese buns is a little less wholesome when cheese is a luxury item.

Since 2006, budget day in this country has started with the prime minister and finance minister of the day enjoying a simple local snack. During National’s tenure in government, then Finance Minister Bill English opted for a pie from a local bakery. Grant Robertson paid homage to his southern roots and replaced pie with a cheese roll in 2018. On a day full of politics, analysis and numbers, eating a humble pie or cheese roll is a easy way to connect with people.

Politicians know optics and know that showing off their financial status (a wealthier position than most of the people they serve) is a bad idea. Mansions, multiple rental properties and luxury cars are frowned upon but accepted as a matter of course. But the lens in the operations of government errs on the side of the ordinary and the “people.” Ardern does Instagram live videos from Premier House while making it look like a slightly larger than usual villa rather than a mansion. The Labor Government now prepares a barbecue breakfast on Waitangi Day every year. You get the picture.

So what a shock it was to see a plate of 16 cheese rolls during Ardern’s Instagram live with Robertson this morning for their snack tradition. A pie costs about $5. A roll of cheese looks like it should cost $1. But when savory cheese (which is used in any decent cheese roll recipe) costs $20 for a block on speciala platter of plain white bread and cheese that isn’t even eaten on camera is as much a display of wealth as take a car from the apartments opposite the parliament, to the parliament.

Today’s budget announcements included an increase of about $24 a week for single parent recipients. There are also cost of living support payments coming with $350 for those earning up to $70,000 a year and not receiving the winter energy payment. This averages out to $27 per week for three months. The payments are likely in response to growing concerns over the rising cost of living in Aotearoa. Basic groceries are more expensive than ever, including cheese.

With 16 on Robertson’s board and two on Ardern’s board, that’s a doubled standard recipe needed to produce these cheese rolls. Is the $24 increase for single parent recipients enough to make the humble cheesy buns for this year’s Budget Day snack?

Mom, are looking for.

There are recipes that feed 35 (Annabel Langbein) and certainly cost over $24 but we don’t need 35, we need 18. Why did Robertson introduce a plate of 16 rolls of cheese ? Show, I guess. Show cheese privilege. Below is the list of ingredients for a classic Maggi recipe. He serves 20.

2x can of evaporated milk – $7.20
2x packet of onion soup – $3.20
360g savory cheese – $12.00 (500g block)
1x sliced ​​bread – $3.00
60g butter – $3.30 (200g block)

Total cost: $28.70

That a snack made famous for its simplicity and, in the past, its cheapness now costs the same as a good take-out dinner, speaks volumes about the cost of food and the inconsistency of $27 in l economy today.

For next year’s budget, may I suggest a humble bowl of porridge.

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About Matthew R. Dailey

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