VIVA LA REVOLUTION!

THE FAMILY GROOVE STIRS IT UP WITH CELEBRITY CHEF, AUTHOR, TELEVISION STAR AND SHEER FORCE OF NATURE JAMIE OLIVER, WHO DISHES ABOUT HIS IMPASSIONED CAMPAIGN TO OVERHAUL AMERICA’S SCHOOL LUNCH SYSTEM—AND SAVE AN ENTIRE GENERATION OF CHILDREN FROM AN EARLY GRAVE

JamieOliver Food Revolution

Get up, stand up: Stand up for your rights. You, yes, you (mother, father, aunt, uncle, grandparent, random do-gooder or person who found this page by mistake when searching for pictures of its swoon-inducing interview subject) are, essentially, helping today’s youth die a slow, painful, bloated death from the foods that you are allowing them to eat.

We get it. We know money is tight. We know you are busy. We are there with you. But, here’s the thing: You can do something about it. You have the power to reverse the damage. You have the power to not just change but completely revolutionize how we, as a society, view and use food. Our children’s generation is the first one on record that is doomed to have a shorter life span than its predecessor’s. How can we stand by and let multimillion-dollar marketing campaigns, red-taped-to-the-hilt state and local political machines, and defunct laws kill our kids?

This is our clarion call. This is our fight. This is what our generation needs to rail against, for our kids, for ourselves, for our kids’ kids. Processed, chemical-infused, sugar-laden foods, like cigarettes, are no longer a dirty little secret; everyone knows they can kill you.

It’s Custard’s Last Stand—and this is our Battle of the Little Bighorn.

And whom do we have leading us bravely into the line of fire? None other than a well-intentioned Brit named Jamie Oliver, a man whose passion for this mission is so palpable, it nearly oozes out of the television.

Oliver, a famous chef whose star came to rise with his Naked Chef television and book series, recently turned his life’s work to saving British and American youths from eating themselves to death via a blitzkrieg of a campaign designed to educate and empower families of all economic backgrounds to reclaim the fate of their children’s health and, once and for all, change what we cook, the way we cook and, ergo, what we eat.

Here, our fearless leader answers a collection of questions culled from TheFamilyGroove.com’s network of brave soldiers, aka moms.

From Laura Meyer, green lifestyle expert and CEO of TheUltimateGreenStore.com, Beverly Hills, Calif.:

You speak my language, Jamie. Having three kids and living and researching all aspects of green living, needless to say I try to keep my kids off of processed food. One thing I find is that my kids get more excited about saving the planet than saving themselves. I try to couple packing fresh food with packing in a waste-free fashion and talk to my kids about that. I find it’s easier to pack waste-free with fresh foods than with processed foods, which, when it comes to lunch packing, are often in wrappers. Have you thought about tying that concept into your campaign?

Jamie Oliver responds:

If you’re cooking fresh, real food from scratch, you don’t need any packaging or chemicals or food processing, which ultimately have a negative impact on the environment. My whole campaign is about learning to cook for yourself and make healthy choices. If your kids are excited about saving the planet, try to get them involved in where their food comes from. Grow a few pots of herbs with them. Take them to a farm.  


From Karen Webb, PR Squared Public Relations, Manhattan Beach, Calif.:

Knowing the potentials health risks, why do you think that so many people are opposed to eating healthy? Is it primarily about money (the perception that it is more expensive to eat healthy) or habits?


Jamie Oliver responds:

If there’s one thing that will save a family and save them money and reinforce a family’s health, the one thing that any family can do is learn to cook. If you know how to cook four, five or 10 simple dishes that are affordable and nutritious, then you’ve got choices. And if you can’t cook, you haven’t got choices.


From Amy Kett, Asheville, N.C.

How can concerned parents with no cameras and no TV show (and no Jamie Oliver accent and charm) start cutting through the red tape and getting fresh food into our kids’ schools?

Jamie Oliver responds:

What needs to happen in America now without fail is that school food needs to be re-evaluated and have new funding, and the lunch cooks need to be recognized for the important people that they are. But at the same time, teach your kids how to cook and get them involved in a food culture early on.


From Brooke May, TheKidPost.com, Westfield, N.J.

Any easy meal ideas that can be made ahead of time and go in the freezer for busy moms who want to be a part of the Food Revolution? Suggestions for homemade snacks for moms that are ready at a quick grab of the diaper bag and keys?

Jamie Oliver responds:

I’m not really a snack guy. My Food Revolution book was written to teach people to cook, and there are quick and easy recipes for salads, soups or crostini that can be made at a moment’s notice. I recommend always having extra-virgin olive oil, chilies (fresh and dried), garlic, lemons and good-quality tinned tomatoes on hand. From there you can do almost anything.


From Lori Sawyer and Mary Patterson of Kids-Move.com and Mommy-Moves.com, Middletown, N.J.

What did you learn from your time in Huntington, West Virginia, and how has what you learned informed/shaped your mission?

Jamie Oliver responds:

I learned it’s exactly the same back home as when I did this in the UK. Basically, all humans hate change, and it’s change that we need. But my general attitude, which I’m fairly positive is the key to getting these stories across, is you put your head down, you get in the community, start working with families, start building relationships, and really let word of mouth get out there that this change is positive, it can help you, it can help you save money, it can help the health of your family.


From Priscilla Hefflinger, Atlanta, Ga.

What’s next? And how can I help?

Jamie Oliver Responds

I honestly believe signing my petition is a move toward ensuring this in the long run. We have about 600,000 signatures and every one helps. You can go to www.jamieoliver.com/campaigns/jamies-food-revolution/petition. But also, whether you’re a parent or a kid, you need to know that it’s all right to be aware of where your food comes from and what’s in it. If your food is massively processed and full of things you can’t pronounce, you absolutely have a right to ask for, and expect, change. As a parent, now is the time to be paranoid and have an opinion. Talk to other parents about what’s going on with the lunches at school, because if we put the effort in now, we’ll be able to sort things out. Write to your congressmen and senators. If we get enough people talking about this issue and asking for change, we can make it happen.



Get on the bus, people. Get on the bus. Go to www.jamieoliver.com for more information.

Hungry for more?

Catch clips of the show and learn more about Jamie’s mission.

Buy the book!




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