Best Start Foods is a prepaid card that can be used to buy healthy foods for children under 3.
It provides low income families on certain benefits with £17.00 every four weeks during pregnancy and for every child under three to spend on a range of healthy foods. The payment increases to £34.00 for children under one. [The payment replaces the UK Government’s Healthy Start Vouchers in Scotland.]
The Best Start Foods card can be used to buy food in shops or online – in large supermarkets and smaller local shops. The shop must sell the healthy foods listed on the card and display the Mastercard logo.
The foods it can buy are:
- plain cow’s milk
- first infant formula
- fresh, frozen or tinned fruit or vegetables
- fresh or dried pulses like lentils, beans, peas and barley
- fresh eggs
Best Start Foods can be applied for during pregnancy, or any time up to a child turning 3 years old. This goes up to 4 years old for a child:
- who’s over 2 years old when the application is made
- that the applicant also gets Healthy Start Vouchers for
The payments of Best Start Foods are:
- £17 every 4 weeks during pregnancy
- £34 every 4 weeks from your child being born up until they’re a 1 year old
- £17 every 4 weeks between the ages of 1 and 3
The payment scheme is being run by Social Security Scotland which is also managing the Best Start Grant.
If you’re under 18, you do not need to be on any payments or benefits to apply for Best Start Grant or Best Start Foods.
To find out more and to make an application visit: Benefits and Grants
Click this link for information on: Best Start Grant and Best Start Foods