Jamie still going to war on junk food generation.
JAMIE Oliver has made no secret of his desire to educate the masses. In the past two decades, the Essex boyturned-political crusader has tackled childhood obesity, with the goal to shake up school dinners; overhauled the nation's sugar intake; revolutionised home cooking; and provided a platform to train apprentice chefs from disadvantaged backgrounds.
He's also built his own empire - worth a rumoured PS300m.
The friendly TV chef and restaurateur (pictured below) has a dogged determination when we meet - an infectious energy that sees him bound from one topic to the next.
"If I had a magic wand, if I could make one wish for the planet, I'd want every child, at 16, to be able to cook 10 recipes to save their life," begins Jamie, 43, barely pausing for breath between sentences. "I want to teach them the basics of nutrition, and the basics of shopping and budgeting. If you were to gift that to children, we would be in a much happier, healthier, more sustainable place. The structure of education in most countries is science, maths, language and they think cooking is this f****** periphery. A romantic, middle-class luxury: 'Oh isn't it cute?' "But if you look at public health and death, if you can't cook, then your life has a certain curve to it and you'll die at a certain age. Of course, some people don't, but if you take 10,000 people that can't cook, they're dying sooner than the ones that can.
"Obviously I'm biased (but) I'm not dramatic, because I think child health and public health is so important."
The latest stage of his epic antiobesity drive has seen him call for the Government to impose a 9pm watershed on junk food adverts.
"Kids are bombarded, day-in, day-out, with ads for food and drink that are high in fat, sugar and salt. We've #AdEnough," he tweeted back in April.
"Interestingly, we have all the science and data from the cleverest people you can trust, that say junk food advertising needs to (happen) after nine o'clock at night," he reasons, resolute in his mission.
"But the heads of the advertising organisations and these channels are saying advertising doesn't make kids eat more stuff!" He has another strategy, however: "One of our suggestions is that you shouldn't be able to use cartoons on cereal (boxes) or food that is unhealthy. They should be used for good, not for bad. And if you look at all the graphics, the animations and the Disney characters, it's nearly all of it."