Liz Truss during her keynote speech (Photo: Jacob King - PA Images via Getty Images)
Liz Truss may have just topped her own record on making public gaffes after she repeatedly promised her government would “grow the pie” of the British economy.
For context, Truss was making the closing speech for her first Conservative conference as the leader of the party and the prime minister just after she fell to new depths in opinion polls, and worries about a Tory MP rebellion grow.
The speech was highly-anticipated, especially as Truss has been heavily criticised for her public speaking style in the past.
She has been mocked repeatedly over a 2014 speech, where the then environment secretary famously said: “We import two thirds of our cheese. That. Is. A. Disgrace.”
During the same speech, she excitedly added: “In December I’ll be in Beijing, opening up new pork markets.”
This has also gone down in the internet hall of fame.
So it’s not surprising that her Twitter critics picked up on one particular gaffe from this speech – her promise to “grow the pie”.
She said: “For far too long the political debate has been dominated by the argument about how we distributed a limited economic pie.
“Instead we grow the pie so that everyone gets a bigger slice.”
Cue Twitter pointing out that, actually, you can’t do that.
YOU CAN'T GROW PIES.
— Jay Rayner (@jayrayner1) October 5, 2022
HOW DO YOU GROW PIES? HOW?
— Toby Earle 🇺🇦 (@TobyonTV) October 5, 2022
we are in our fourth week of a prime minister who thinks you can grow pies
— James Felton (@JimMFelton) October 5, 2022
STOP SAYING YOU WANT TO GROW PIES YOU CAN’T GROW PIES
— Tom Hamilton (@thhamilton) October 5, 2022
You can't grow pies. You can't grow pies. You can't grow pies.
— Sam Freedman (@Samfr) October 5, 2022
If it was possible to grow a pie I would have been living off the land a long time ago
— Liam Thorp (@LiamThorpECHO) October 5, 2022
Liz Truss back to saying 'we need to grow the pie'. Does she have a magic pie tree? Is she making No.10 aides bury crumbs from Greggs in the garden?
— Tiernan Douieb (@TiernanDouieb) October 5, 2022
Liz Truss again saying she wants to "grow the pie", you can't grow a pie Liz. If it was possible I would have a whole field of them
— dave ❄️ 🥕 🧻 (@davemacladd) October 5, 2022
Lunch soon. Might grow a pie.
— Danny Wallace (@dannywallace) October 5, 2022
Some people extended the metaphor, and asked how you could grow the UK’s economic “pie” without putting more ingredients in.
The problem with this “growing the pie” analogy is that to make a pie bigger, you have to actually put more things into it. Invest flour, provide some egg support, a little syrup.
The pie doesn’t magically grow if you ask it to be an entrepreneurial pie and the cupboard is bare. pic.twitter.com/h4o6IoqmO0
— Mark Conway (@MarkConway87) October 5, 2022
Others remembered TalkRADIO’s Mike Graham making a vaguely similar mistake after he tried to claim you can grow concrete during an interview with a environmental activist last year.
What grows faster, pies or concrete?
— James Oh Brien (@mrjamesob) October 5, 2022
Last year Mike Graham claimed you can grow concrete and now Liz Truss is claiming repeatedly that her government can grow a pie.
I would like to live in a normal country, actually. https://t.co/EybqoMw1OZ
— Erica Buist (@ericabuist) October 5, 2022
One account dubbed her “pie minister” rather than “prime minister”....
Wow. Blown away by that speech. From Pork Markets to Pie Minister to wiping billions off the economy, Liz really is taking us on a journey.
— THE SECRET TORY 🇬🇧 (@secrettory12) October 5, 2022
While there were, of course, some accounts which were just nostalgic for the “pork markets” and cheese import days...
Measured on the meme metric, it's unlikely that today's speech will be as successful as the Cheese and Pork Markets speech. https://t.co/HmTKpUjIpI
— realhansard (@realhansard) October 5, 2022
This article originally appeared on HuffPost UK and has been updated.