Longman Dictionary of Contemporary English homepage

subsistence

noun
     
sub‧sis‧tence [uncountable]
1 the condition of only just having enough money or food to stay alive:
Many of the families are forced to live at the subsistence level.
The land provided subsistence and little more.
2PE

subsistence farming/agriculture etc

farming that produces just enough food for the farmer to live on, but does not produce enough food to sell to other people
3

subsistence allowance/payment etc

money that is paid to someone so that they can buy meals, pay for a place to stay etc

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