October 2017, New Zealand: Students from Gisborne Intermediate and Makauri schools traded pencils for utensils to celebrate International Chefs Day.
Gisborne Intermediate ran a special workshop that focused on “the heroes of vegetables”.
Students learned how to make an orange and carrot salad, broccoli salad with raisins and hummus, as well as other healthy recipes.
“It’s all about turning kids on to healthy cooking,” said chef Sue Matthews of Eastern Institute of Technology (EIT).
“Learning to cook is so important and we focused on cooking with fresh produce. It’s also about making cooking fun.
Smoothies were also on the menu. Budding young cooks were encouraged to try different combinations, using carrots, celery, bananas, strawberries and cranberry juice.
International Chefs Day was a global event during which the New Zealand Chefs Association and Nestle New Zealand ran chef-led workshops in schools around the country.
Ms Matthews, the adult community education coordinator at EIT and an active member of the Chefs Association, is enthusiastic about getting kids hooked on growing and cooking their own food.
“I believe we, as chefs, have a greater responsibility and role to play in our communities. We have the knowledge and skills to create nutritious food, which has a positive impact on people’s health and wellbeing. By passing these to the younger generation, we can bring enormous benefits to them and their whanau.
The Ministry of Health’s New Zealand Health Survey 2015/16 revealed that 11 percent of Kiwi kids were obese and a further 21 percent were overweight.
Nestle New Zealand country manager and chief executive, Christian Abboud, said these statistics highlighted the importance of people working together to “create a healthy tomorrow for today’s children”.
“Being able to prepare a healthy meal is a fundamental part of enjoying a healthy diet as adults.
“International Chefs Day workshops give children the chance to have fun and be creative with food while they prepare supercharged meals using the superhero foods that are the focus for this year.”
Reprinted from Gisborne Herald: http://gisborneherald.co.nz/localnews/3058328-135/veggie-heroes-as-students-hit-kitchen