Wednesday, 26 August 2009

Grow it, Cook it, Eat it

This September, over 1,000 primary school children in Pembrokeshire will be taught all about healthy food, and where it comes from, in a dynamic hands-on event called ‘Grow it, Cook it, Eat it’.

As part of their day, the 9-11 year olds will be able to:

  • learn about healthy food and take part in cookery demonstrations and tasters with celebrity Welsh chef Angela Gray.
  • watch Friesian cows in the manor’s paddock and learn about the importance of dairy produce. After observing the cows, children will find out what happens to the milk they produce, watch cheese being made and sample three locally produced cheeses before playing a game of ‘food bingo’ to find their favourite.
  • go on a woodland walk around the grounds of Scolton Manor with National Park ranger Tim, who will talk about the importance of conserving the countryside and point out wild fruit, flowers and other woodland features.
  • sow seeds to grow herbs, beans, carrots, peas, beetroot, onions, and other food, and learn the skills to grow plants to eat.

Other activities include food rationing in World War Two, what’s in a food label, food safety, how to shop nutritionally, and the importance of looking after the countryside.

‘Grow it, Cook it, Eat it’ is now in its third year. It has attracted 33 schools this year, whose pupils will each spend a day taking part in a variety of fun, interactive workshops.

"The concept behind the event is to teach children about the farm-to-fork process of our food - while increasing the awareness of the importance of nutrition and healthy eating, along with the knowledge of local produce," said Councillor Sian James, Pembrokeshire County Council’s Cabinet Member for Health and Wellbeing.

The event has grown in size from its pilot year, from being held over three days, to now taking place over five days to accommodate the schools wishing to attend.

It is staged by a partnership of Pembrokeshire agencies and schemes, including Pembrokeshire County Council, the Food Standards Agency, Pembrokeshire Coast National Park Authority, Pembrokeshire College, Food Centre Wales, Cookstart led by Angela Gray, and the Pembrokeshire Local Health Board.

"Every single school which took part in the 2004 event said they would like to see the event repeated, that it was beneficial to the children, and that the pupils enjoyed their day," said Councillor James.

Some of the schools’ comments included:

  • ‘It was a tremendous help and contributed to the science work being undertaken in school - but it was a much more visual/ hands-on approach.’
  • ‘It was a worthwhile opportunity for pupils to see at first-hand the art of gardening and cooking – very relevant for our key-stage 2 curriculum projects.’
  • ‘Something for everyone - a well-planned package.’


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