Jamie Oliver calls for a Minister for Food to tackle obesity

06 November 2008 by
Jamie Oliver calls for a Minister for Food to tackle obesity

Jamie Oliver, the celebrity chef campaigner, today called on the Government to appoint a dedicated minister for food to prevent an obesity "horror show" in the UK.

Speaking to the Commons Health Select Committee, Oliver said a new food minister would need a budget of about £6.5bn, 10 times the £650m spread over six years that was handed to the his school dinners campaign.

The celebrity chef added that he would not take on the role, but would help the Government find the right person.

"I want someone to be accountable," Oliver said. "I would like to see someone from the private sector with real savvy who could inspire and motivate local authorities.

"I think I'm best off on the outside so I wouldn't take the job. But I would be happy to find someone."

Speaking about his ongoing school dinners campaign, Oliver warned that the training of dinner ladies was a "bloody disgrace". Only about 5,000 of 125,000 dinner ladies had been trained, he said.

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By Daniel Thomas

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