The nation’s conversational plate will be piled high this year with information about how we can eat better for the sake of people and planet, as part of a new initiative to raise awareness of the connection between diet, health and wellbeing, and the environment.
The Crunch is the brainchild of health research charity the Wellcome Trust and has been launched in order to give everyone in Britain access to information about how food choices impact on our lives and those of others. Schools, technology centres and other places of learning will be running a raft of The Crunch-related activities to enthuse and educate, all of them free, until 2017.
Five hundred “ambassadors” for The Crunch – volunteers including chefs and farmers – will help spread the message in their local communities and give talks around the country. Primary and secondary schools have already received special resource kits to help bring a much-overlooked topic – our relationship with our food – into the classroom.
The goal is not just to educate, however, but through education to empower people to make different choices about what they put into their shopping trolleys and bodies. Changing the way we eat for the better – such as cutting down on the amount of meat we eat – has a knock-on effect not just in terms of improved human health but of creating a healthier society and world.
“We know how important the food we eat is for our own wellbeing, but it’s easy to overlook the impact it has on our long-term health and the health of the planet,” said Simon Chaplin, director of culture and society at the Wellcome Trust.
He added that as important as it was to carry out research and work with policy-makers to change dietary habits, equally vital was “exploring what these issues mean for us all in our day-to-day lives. Through The Crunch, we will empower people across the UK to learn more about how global issues impact on them and their local communities, and encourage conversations about our food, our planet and our health.”