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Waitrose comes under fire for its student essentials list which includes Harissa

On the Waitrose website however, the products, handpicked for ‘the fledgling cook about to fly the nest’ mainly receive positive reviews.One customer, who gave the Harissa paste a five stars said: “This is the best harissa I have tasted,” while another called the bouillon powder a ‘must-have’.Waitrose has also defended its recommendations, with a spokeswoman saying: “All these ingredients go a long way and can be the basis of many simple, tasty and great value home cooked meals.” For many university students, takeaway pizza, instant noodles and late-night kebabs are staples of a first year diet, but supermarket chain Waitrose is looking to change that.The upmarket retailer has named five must-have ingredients for freshers to purchase ahead of moving into halls, including a jar of Belazu Rose Harissa paste at £4.35 and a tub of Marigold Swiss vegetable bouillon powder for £2.With student maintenance loans of up to £11,354 for the forthcoming academic year, Waitrose could be about to cash in on a new student market, but parents and students alike were quick to ridicule the chain for the items seen as more fine dining than first year.Commenting on the list that also includes Aspall organic cyder vinegar (£1.70), Clearspring organic Tamari soya sauce (£3.15) and Waitrose cooks’ ingredients organic Italian seasoning (£1.89), Fiona Kabuki wrote on Twitter: “That’s £13 and you have nothing to actually eat.”Claire Farrow added: “This is completely ridiculous. Some students may want to try their hand at creative cooking, but these are not essentials. How about Sunflower oil, salt & pepper, garlic bulb and tomato puree?” Want the best of The Telegraph direct to your email and WhatsApp? Sign up to our free twice-daily  Front Page newsletter and new  audio briefings. The Waitrose concept of essential cooking staples for new students!?! pic.twitter.com/0a8h8utiwz— Andrew Stronach (@aistronach) September 9, 2018 One unprepared parent wrote jokingly: “Uh oh…my son has just gone off with 3 jars of coffee, 4 packs of Super Noodles, 2 Pot Noodles and a bottle of Nandos peri peri sauce.”

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