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Bristol shines a light on creativity and innovation in school kitchens

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As communities across Bristol start to look ahead to the second Bristol Food Connections festival taking place in May this year, a light is being shone upon creative and healthy cooking in schools across the city.

The BBC is embarking on its final callout for nominations for the annual BBC Food & Farming Awards ahead of the deadline at midnight on Monday 26 January. In particular, they are on the hunt for nominations for the BBC Cook of the Year award – any local food heroes who are working imaginatively and innovatively with food in schools, hospitals, workplaces and care homes – to celebrate the unsung heroes of the foodie community. People can submit their nominations here.

Alongside the BBC Good Food Awards, Bristol Healthy Schools has also this month launched a search for schools that grow, cook and bake their own food getting young people of all ages cooking, thinking and talking about what they eat. The aim is to encourage and showcase those children and young people who are developing a real passion for cooking, with support from their schools.

Rachel Cooke, Bristol City Council’s Food in Schools Dietician (Healthy Schools), said: “This work by Bristol Healthy Schools has really captured the imagination of young people across Bristol. In previous years it has been amazing to see the enthusiasm of those involved in the competition and the quality of recipes submitted. For some it is their first foray into cooking, others are established cooks starting to think more about including locally grown food in their recipes or even going totally farm to fork. Our youngest ever finalist in the showcase was just 7 years old yet was as cool as a cucumber in the kitchen cook off!

“The schools involved in previous years have reported a real boost to the children’s confidence, some of whom have gone on to secure valuable work experience and are even considering becoming a chef as their career! We hope to see even more nominations this year which could have an even wider impact.”

The awards are a partnership between Bristol Food Connections, Bristol Healthy Schools and the BBC. The deadline for applications is midnight on Monday 23 March and nominations can be submitted here.

Lorna Knapman, Festival Director for Bristol Food Connections, said: “Inspiring children of all ages to get cooking and growing lies at the heart of our values and this competition is a brilliant way of engaging with schools and families. We had some inspiring entries in 2014 and we look forward immensely to developing the programme for 2015.”



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