ITV and Veg Power announce winner of School Catering Challenge

ITV and Veg Power announce winner of School Catering Challenge

Elior and Stephenson Way Academy catering team has one the Veg Power and ITV ‘Eat Them to Defeat Them’ school catering challenge.

The school catering challenge was a national competition aimed to highlight the brilliant, innovative and creative work that catering teams across the country were doing to help support this year’s ‘Eat Them to Defeat Them’ campaign.

The judges awarded Stephenson Way’s team for doing such a brilliant job at capturing the spirit of the campaign and involving so many children in their colourful and inspiring designs. They transformed the school canteen with a fantastic display of evil vegetables! The kids loved it and enjoyed being the heroes as they had to ‘Eat Them to Defeat Them’.

“We are delighted to have been awarded the top and runner up prizes in the Caterers Challenge for Stephenson Way Infants and Middlestone Moor respectively,” says Jade Gower, promotions manager from Elior. “Not only that, but to have six of our schools make the shortlist is such a great testament to the hard work of all of our catering teams. We have fully embraced Eat Them to Defeat Them across our education sites as we recognise the lasting positive impact it makes to the pupils and what a difference it truly has made! We are proud to have had the team’s creative efforts in bringing ‘Eat Them to Defeat Them’ to life recognised”

“The Catering team at Stephenson Way did an amazing job,” adds Dan Parker, CMO, Veg Power. “This is a shining example of caterers working in partnership with schools and pupils to bring the fun of Eat Them to Defeat Them alive and to use it to encourage kids to eat more veg. Our judges were particularly impressed by sheer wow factor of your displays, the way the kids had caught the fun-evil spirit of the campaign and how you bought it all together with varied and tasty vegetable treats. Thank you for the passion, dedication and sheer joy you bring to your pupils.”

“It’s so inspiring to see how caterers and schools have taken up the Eat Them to Defeat Them campaign and made it their own,” says Clare Phillips, director of social purpose, ITV. “It’s the combination of what broadcasters like ITV can do, together with supermarkets, schools, parents and caterers across the country, and our partners Veg Power, that will change children’s attitudes to vegetables. And we know it works.’”

Following the success of 2019’s campaign, February 2020 saw ITV and Veg Power launch a new, bigger and better incarnation of Eat them to Defeat Them. This year, adverts are airing alongside the original advert on ITV, Channel 4 and Sky, with each advert challenging children to eat that week’s featured veg.

An incredible 1,500 primary schools have taken part in the ‘Eat Them to Defeat Them’ campaign so far. The programme has been designed by educators, public health professionals, school caterers and the Veg Power Creative team in line with the curriculum and government healthy-eating guidelines.

Many schools posted some of their wonderful and innovative creative ideas via social media using the #EatThemToDefeatThem hashtag.

The data from the 2019 campaign reveals that the campaign was seen by 38m people on ITV and sales data from econometrics specialist Pearl Metrics and data analyst Nielsen show there was a 2.3% uplift in vegetable sales during the campaign. This helped generate an extra 17.7m unit sales of vegetables with a retail value of £16.2m.

In addition, Childwise and YouGov suggests that attitudes and behaviour among children and their parents have started to change. A YouGov survey of 1,000 children and their parents showed the advert was liked by 64% of children aged between 6-11years. In addition, 43% of children who saw the advert said they wanted to eat more vegetables that week.

Veg Power is part of the Peas Please initiative which aims to deliver meaningful change in the food system by 2023 by making it easier for everyone, particularly those on low incomes, to eat more veg. The initiative is coordinated by partner organisations in England, Northern Ireland, Scotland and Wales, and aims to bring together businesses and brands from across the UK food system to secure commitments to improve the availability, affordability and quality of the veg offered in supermarkets, shops, schools, pubs, fast food outlets and beyond.

Earlier this year, Peas Please published its second Progress Report, announcing that 90m more portions of veg have been served as a result of the initiative. The report showcases ‘Veg Pledges’ made by 63 contract caterers, high street chains, retailers, wholesalers, manufacturers, public food procurers, broadcasters and 22 Veg Cities.

During the closure of schools due to Covid-19, parents and teachers can download fun and creative worksheets and art projects from the Eat them To Defeat them website.