BBC News Magazine
January 7, 2010
[efoods]On 8 January 1940, the UK tightened its belt and entered a period of privation that was to percolate through every layer of the national consciousness.
As the system gathered momentum, the ordinary ration came to encompass meat, cheese, butter, margarine, bacon and ham, tea, preserves, sugar and cooking fats such as lard.
There was also a separate points system for canned food, dry goods and other groceries. Clothing and petrol were also rationed.
But it is perhaps the food ration that looms largest in the nation’s memory.
Every week the nation’s housewives would queue with their ration books – at shops they had registered with – to buy their allowances of groceries.