Producers of The Block have poured cold water on claims that contestants are being denied basics such as food, toilet paper and keys to cars.
The reality series is currently being filmed in Gisborne, about an hour out of Melbourne in Victoria’s Macedon Ranges, an area known for its forests and the iconic Hanging Rock.
An anonymous ‘insider’ told the Daily Telegraph contestants had access to “barely any food,” that “some days a muesli bar and apple is as good as it gets” and that while “there is a catering tent on site, but that is for the production staff only.”
They had also claimed that car keys were collected at the end of the day, making it impossible for contestants to nip out to get groceries.
However, after speaking to Executive Producer Julian Cress, TV Tonight reported quite the opposite – that not only do Blockheads absolutely have access to food and transport, host Scott Cam himself personally cooks a sit-down meal for contestants a couple times a week.
“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.”
The remaining days, contestants can draw on their $1,400 weekly allowance.
Cress noted there were portaloos all over the site as well as the bathrooms that contestants have already renovated inside their homes.
As for the cars, Cress said contestants were free to head five minutes down the road to buy any groceries they like from Aldi – the show’s major sponsor. Cress said the keys were only ever taken when maintenance on car cameras needed to be done.
Also, as it’s been for recent seasons, The Block also has an on-site McCafe as well as a food truck.
“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 remarked.