83. Deputy Thomas P. Broughan asked the Tánaiste and Minister for Justice and Equality the dietary provision of meals to prisoners, by prison; the budget allocation for catering, by prison, in 2011 and 2016; and if she will make a statement on the matter. [15844/17]


Tánaiste and Minister for Justice and Equality (Deputy Frances Fitzgerald): The Irish Prison Service operates a 28 day menu cycle which was reviewed and updated in November 2015. The menu provides a wide variety of wholesome and nutritious food and drink each day, properly prepared and well presented. All prisoners, in particular those with medical needs, are encouraged to make healthy choices from the menu provided.
Section 23 of the Prison Rules, 2007 (S.I.No. 252 of 2007) provides that the Governor shall ensure that, where the prison doctor so advises, special provision is made in relation to the dietary needs of a prisoner who suffers from a medical condition the treatment, prevention or alleviation of the symptoms of which necessitates adherence to a special diet.
The following table outlines the budgets allocated for catering for the years 2011 - 2016.

Year Budget allocation
2011 €8,200,000
2012 €9,009,000
2013 €9,009,000
2014 €8,809,000
2015 €8,769,000
2016 €7,800,000