Kids to Learn How to Cook to End Britain’s Cooking Crisis

UK - New research shows that more children think that they should go to work on an aeroplane than go to work on an egg.
calendar icon 30 September 2013
clock icon 4 minute read

The survey*, commissioned for British Egg Week, also shows that while 95 per cent of adults can cook at least one egg dish from scratch, only half of today’s kids can.

These results mirror other recent surveys which have shown that more than half of the UK population have to refer to a recipe before they can boil an egg,

In response to what is being labelled as ‘Britain’s Cooking Crisis’, a national campaign is being launched, during British Egg Week (30 September and 4 October), to teach school children how to cook.

More than a quarter of children asked think that they are cooking when they are making a sandwich.

And one in five 13 and 14 year-olds think that microwaving a meal constitutes cooking.

It was in the 1950s that comedian Tony Hancock first asked the nation to “Go to work on an egg” and a recent survey shows that eight out of ten adults still remember the slogan that seeped into Britain’s psyche.

But when 7 to 9 year olds were asked to complete the phrase nearly a third thought that they should go to work on an aeroplane. The apple proved to be the second most popular answer with the egg only third.

“We are really worried about these findings. Tony Hancock was right – everyone can benefit from going to work on an egg. But people need to know how to cook them and if our children can’t cook their diet is going to suffer as they get older. If we don’t put this right this will develop into Britain’s own cooking crisis,” said Andrew Joret from British Lion eggs.

British Lion eggs have teamed up with the Kids’ Cookery School charity to revive the spirit of ‘Go to work on an egg’ during a nationwide tour of schools, led by the world’s fastest omelette maker Howard Helmer, during British Egg Week. Free cookery classes will introduce young people to the fast foods of yesteryear.

Half the adults questioned aged between 40 and 60, (48 per cent) benefited from learning how to cook with eggs at school compared to just 21 per cent of children aged between 7 and 12.

Fiona Hamilton-Fairley, Principal of the Kids’ Cookery School, a registered charity, said: “If children are not taught about food preparation and cooking skills, we can’t expect them to understand the long term problems around poor diet, obesity and bad health in years to come.

“We need to teach our children as young as possible how to cook, to ensure that every child leaves school knowing how to create nutritious meals.”

When it comes to eating, scrambled eggs is the kids’ favourite dish in most of the country although in the West Midlands they prefer them boiled and in Northern Ireland they like them fried.

Today’s adults enjoy a poached egg most of all, although in East Anglia, London, the North West and in the South West it is still the fried egg that comes out on top.

New research by the Department of Health, published last year, showed that today’s eggs contain more nutrients than previously thought. Health experts have also confirmed that previous fears over cholesterol were unfounded and that there is no need to limit how many you eat.

When cooking with eggs, always look for eggs bearing the Lion mark, which guarantees that they have been produced to the highest standards of food safety. All Lion Quality eggs come from British hens vaccinated against salmonella, are fully traceable and have a ‘best before’ date on the shell as a guarantee of freshness.

*1,000 7-14 year olds and 1,000 40-60 year olds surveyed in August 2013 by OnePoll

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