Cotswold chef Rob Rees on inspiring talking
RENOWNED Cotswold chef Rob Rees says the UK is "in the grip" of a "humanitarian food crisis".
During a talk at a conference at All Saints Academy in Hester's Way, which was broadcast on YouTube, Rob said Britain was like a third world country because of the number of people starving.
Rob, known as The Cotswold Chef, told the audience: "In the last six months alone, food banks have doubled. 110,000 people, we know, through a referral system actually going into the food bank system.
"(There are) four million people starving in this country every day.
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"It's not just the most vulnerable.
"We are seeing that it's in the middle class where parents think 'I will skip breakfast with my child today' and off they go to school and it becomes the schools' problem."
As the chairman of the School Food Trust Charity, Rob said he was "responsible" for carrying on Jamie Oliver's work to make school meals healthier.
He said he wanted all academies to subscribe to a diet of healthy meals in the same way that state schools do.
"We are in a real state. We have an obesity crisis growing out of control," he said.
"In Gloucestershire alone we spend £140 million each year dealing with obesity."
Rob, who was awarded an MBE, said he believed one of the keys to improving the diet of youngsters was to introduce them to healthy food when they are infants.
He said: "My little boy Jack was around a year-and-a-half old and I went and bought a sardine for about eight pence and we slapped that on his highchair and he played with it for about two hours.
"Was it messy? Absolutely it was messy.
"I then put that sardine in cous- cous and he ate it – 8p.
"Probably three of the best hours I have had with my son."
The talk was arranged by TED, which organises conferences across the world with the aim of sharing ideas.