The Block rejects complaints over food, living conditions.

Yes The Block is tough, say producers, but there's no lockdown conditions or denial of food -Scott Cam even cooks up a feast twice a week.

Claims that contestants on The Block are being denied basics such as food, toilet paper and car keys have been denied by producers.

Reports on the weekend emerged that contestants were doing it tough on the reality series filming in Gisborne, NW of Melbourne.

“They barely have any food,” an unnamed ‘insider’ told the Daily Telegraph. “Some days a muesli bar and apple is as good as it gets … There is a catering tent on site, but that is for the production staff only.

“Everyone is starving, exhausted and stressed. One female contestant has been crying for three days straight.”

The source claimed car keys were confiscated at the end of the day, denying them the ability to shop for food, while living conditions were “freezing.”

Executive Producer Julian Cress told TV Tonight, contestants absolutely had access to food and transport.

“On two nights of the week, (host) Scott Cam personally cooks a sit down meal for all of the contestants. On another day of the week, they’re at our HQ for the room reveal and we provide breakfast, lunch and dinner. When we often take them away for a challenge we have full catering available. So that’s four out of seven days.”

For the remaining days couples can draw upon their $1,400 weekly per diems.

“They all have their own cars. If they want to, they could drive five minutes down the road and use the voucher that they have, to buy any groceries they like from our major sponsor, Aldi. They have a voucher to buy anything they like from the menu at McDonald’s.”

The Block site is also home to a purpose-built McCafe and a food truck on site, providing lunches for all of the contestants, crew and trades at retail prices.

“One contestant team that saw that article and their response was, ‘This is hilarious. Because each of us have put on three kilos since we’ve been here!'” Cress noted.

“The car keys are only ever taken away so that we can do maintenance on car cameras and things like that. It’s not a site where contestants are ever locked down out. We’ve had plenty of occasions where contestants have gone out to dinner at night, or even gone home for the night if they need to visit a child. We’re not those kinds of people.”

There are also portaloos all over the site in addition to the three bathrooms contestants already renovated inside their homes.

But Cress admits to being disappointed at the claims being alleged in print.

“No contestant came into this show, not knowing that they were coming to the Macedon Ranges to do a tree change. And honestly, I’m not making any excuses -we have never, ever held back the fact that if they do get on the show, it’s going to be incredibly hard,” he insisted.

“But this isn’t Nazi Germany. We encourage our contestants to speak their mind. I would rather, if they felt this way, that they perhaps made those comments to me first, rather than to a newspaper.

“I can very readily think of 4 couples amongst the cast that we have this year, who are entirely happy with the treatment they’ve been given…. not that I want to point fingers at anybody.”

But if speaking out is a breach of contract, Cress isn’t about to call in the lawyers, either.

“Honestly, when I read things like this, I don’t think about waving a contract in front of somebody, I think about cooking them a meal,” he said.

“If they feel like they’re not eating enough, then I’ll cook them a meal.”

4 Responses

  1. … one of the biggest causes of this is people who call themselves journalists always calling the contestants on reality shows “stars” … of course, they’re not, they’re just cannon-fodder for the program, but as a result they think of themselves as “stars” and expect to be pampered all the way … when this doesn’t happen they sulk and this newspaper article is a result …

    1. Did you even read the article?

      “They could drive five minutes down the road and use the voucher that they have”.
      “They have a voucher to buy anything they like from the menu at McDonald’s.”

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