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Eat Them To Defeat Them!

Grow Talk by Sofy Robertson

Today marks the launch of a radical new national advertising campaign that aims to inspire children to eat more healthily in order to tackle the rise in childhood obesity. The premise: vegetables are evil; children need to eat them to defeat them.

The advert, which is available online and will premiere on ITV tonight, shows evil vegetables attempting to take over the world. Thus, the children become superheroes by eating the veg to defeat them. Pure genius? Very possibly.

Unlike other healthy eating drives, this campaign turns traditional healthy food advertising on its head. Hugh Fearnley-Whittingstall, renowned celebrity chef and food campaigner based in Devon, is supporting the campaign and described the 60-second advert as “a mini-movie”.

Speaking on ITV’s Good Morning Britain this morning, he described the advert saying:

“It’s subversive, it’s edgy, it’s cheeky and that’s why we think it’s going to be fantastically successful. It’s going to get kids’ attention and engage them in veg in a way they find fun.”

Although the advert is clearly a bit of fun, the campaign behind it is deadly serious. Hugh continued:

“Our kids are bombarded daily with a tidal wave of junk food advertising. Less than 2% of all advertising goes on healthy fresh fruit and vegetables so we’ve got to turn things around and have something exciting and creative coming the other way. I think that’s what we’ve captured here.”

Hugh explained that vegetables are not often represented by big brand names and this was the inspiration behind the Veg Power campaign which “gives [him] hope” that as a country, we can fight the tide of obesity and in particular, childhood obesity.

The campaign has already received support from ITV, supermarkets and a number of celebrity chefs:

“Chefs like my friend Jamie Oliver are supporting us big time.”

When the Veg Power website goes live, it will contain advice on including fruit and vegetables in our diets as well as many delicious recipes.

Hugh encouraged everyone to get involved on social media today, using the hashtag #EatThemToDefeatThem, to share pictures of their favourite fruit and veg as well as recipes and foodspiration. Hugh finished by saying:

“We need to raise a generation now that properly understand what healthy food is. Fruit and vegetables need to absolutely be at the centre of that.”

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