Sunday, February 14, 2010

Urban Chickens help teach children about food

I'm a huge fan of Jamie Oliver, naked chef and -- more recently -- food activist.

Just a year after I became an urban chicken farmer, I started seeing Oliver's work in England on behalf of chicken welfare. He's been credited with convincing some of the larger grocers in the UK to stop purchasing battery hens -- those chickens raised in horrid cramped conditions for the 39 days it takes to get from chick to plucked carcass in the local meat section.

Now, Oliver is setting his sights on the obesity epidemic caused by the crap food the majority of us eat day in and day out. I'm thrilled to see he received a TED prize this past week. You can watch the video here: Jamie Oliver's TED Prize wish: Teach every child about food. It's about 21 minutes long, but it's worth every moment.

There's a jaw-dropping section at about the 11:00 mark (captured above) where Oliver is in a classroom with kids, holding up vegetables and quizzing the kids what they are. They can't identify them. They simply don't know what fresh vegetables look like. It's insane.

One of the things I love about raising urban chickens is that it teaches kids, in such a remarkably visceral way, where their food comes from.

Yummy eggs come from happy chickens. And happy chickens are loved and cared for daily. And that's why they, the kids, should be taking good care of their chickens. It just makes perfect sense to them when they see it. I'd dare say it'd make perfect sense to anyone when they see it.

Which is why we need to find more ways to get people to know where their food comes from.

Go, watch the video now. As a Valentine's day gift to the ones you love, watch it and learn and then do something to help teach kids about food.

May you be flooded in eggs this year.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Wow, thanks for sharing that link. It breaks my heart when children come over to our house and have no idea chickens lay eggs or the red orbs on our vines are tomatoes.

I just posted on my blog introducing kids to eat a variety of foods. I need to include this link as to WHY we need to teach them.

Eat the Rainbow.


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