While the extreme weather conditions seen last year contributed to soaring wheat prices, and imperilled food security in many parts of the world, it could be only a grim foretaste of what is to come, according to research compiled by Oxfam for the start of the Durban climate talks this week.

According to Asda, Brits waste £31m a year on Christmas cooking disasters, including cracked mince pies and over-cooked Brussels sprouts. Meanwhile perhaps in a bid to cut down on costly cooking errors another study has revealed one in 10 of the British population pass pre-bought desserts off as their own. The study of over 2,000 adults from Sainsbury’s and YouGov showed that half of individuals surveyed cheat when baking and a quarter cut corners because of time constraints or a lack of patience. Around 46% of people also take shortcuts, such as buying pre-made icing and ready-made cake mix when it comes to preparing cakes and desserts.

Many of those making their own Christmas puddings may well be using the Delia’s Classic Cake ingredients boxes, sold by Waitrose. The retailer has seen sales of the boxes up 97% on last year. Priced at £10, it includes all the dry ingredients needed to make her Classic Christmas Cake.