Thursday, 17 September 2009

6ft Mutant Vegetable in Croydon

6ft mutant vegetable seen in Croydon looking for councillors ... on Twitpic It appears teenage mutant vegetables have responded to the 5 a Day Days campaign's call for help. They were seen stalking the streets of Croydon looking for councillors and anyone else who maybe trying to advocate the eating of vegetables.

This giant carrot threatened our campaigner with soup yesterday outside Croydon's independent health food store - Oasis Natural Products.

Giant vegetables are expected to be looking out for consumers of fruit and vegetables in the Whitgift shopping centre on Saturday.

Giant vegetables will also appear at the Eco Veggie Fayre in fairfield Halls on the 1st Novemberat the launch of Croydon 5 a Day Day campaign

Wednesday, 16 September 2009

Words of Support for Croydon's 5 a Day Day

Ethical Junction - Ethical Pulse

Now we are cooking on bio-gas as support comes flooding in.

"I support the excelant idea of promoting one day a week as a Vegetarian Day. Croydon must lead the way as a progressive borough! "
Nitin Mehta MBE


"This has my full support"
Tony Newman - Labour Group Leader - Croydon Council


"Really good to see you taking this action on the ground. We wrote to Councillor Fisher along with every other Council leader at the start of NVW to try and get them to take up this initiative but had no response."
Annette Pinner CEO Vegetarian Society UK


"Good luck - I think it is a great idea."
Diana Jarvis - Croydon Journalist - Newsquest South London


"This sounds a great thing to be doing - I hope it goes really well."
Khemasiddhi - Croydon Buddhists


"It sounds like public engagement is more or less guaranteed so I hope it goes well and that the public take on board the FSA/ DH messages regarding diet and healthy eating that you'll no doubt be promoting. Thanks for bringing this to my notice, and I hope your event is a success"
Catherine Collins - Chief Dietician at St George's Hospital, spokesperson for the BDA


"Good luck with your campaign."
Dr Harshad N Sanghrajka - Director, Institute of Jainology


"What a great idea, the 1st November is in the diary"
Fiona Woodcock - Surrey Street fruit & veg market - Market Inspector

Tuesday, 15 September 2009

Support for Croydon 5 A Day Day

Croydon - Whats that coming over the hill - is it a monster? Is it a Monster? The Croydon 5 a Day Day campaign is beginining to look that way.

Here's the latest supporters (Thanks to them all for their support)

Visitor Centre and east Croydon office of Croydon Bid

Croydon Friends of The Earth

Passion for The Planet Radio Station and London Leader Chantal Cooke

The 300 year Old Surrey Street Fruit and Vegetable Market

Solutions Health and Fitness Gym

Animal Aid

The Young Indian Vegetarians

The Vegetarian Society


Croydon Vegetarians and Croydon Vegans

Oasis Natural Products Croydon's independent Health Food Store

Jackie King Photographer

Geoff Francis - Artist

Thursday, 10 September 2009

Croydon Healthy Business Awards

Health Challenge to find Croydon's Top Healthy Offices, Restaurants and Shops (From Croydon Guardian)

The search is on to find the healthiest businesses in Croydon and put them in the spot light.

"There are some excellent healthy ideas going on quietly behind the scenes, often we never hear about them until they stop because allegedly no one was interested. We want to put the good ideas on a pedestal and encourage others to step up and reward excellence" says leading UK Nutritionist Yvonne Bishop-Weston

The winners of the first Foods for Life Healthy Business Awards will be announced on Sunday 1st November at Croydon's Fairfield Halls.

If you think you have a winning menu or project contact Foods for Life via their website at

Croydon Lags Behind in the UK Meat Free Day Race

Liverpool - News - Liverpool Local News - Liverpool schools to go meat free once a week

Our campaign contacts today revealed that Liverpool council has already put a motion forward and the council are currently putting a document together to push it forward.

Liverpool schools could be the first in the UK to go meat free one day every week encouraged by Sir Paul McCartney

Brighton, Lancaster and Leeds are also putting a motion to the full council with help from Animal Aid (See www. Meat Free Monday .com )

Meanwhile Bristol council are being targeted by Viva's Fruity Funday Campaign , Thames Valley Vegetarians have Reading Council in their sights and Veggies at the Sumac Centre are targetting Nottingham  Council.

Croydon Nutritionist Yvonne Bishop-Weston says " I don't understand why Croydon Council are so resistant to such an obvious and logical simple solution. They have been sent the same information that other councils have been sent but they are lagging behind more open minded forward thinking councils. 5 a Day Days are an obvious first step, inexpensive, positive solution for sustainabilty and health"

Croydon Eco Veggie Fayre at Fairfield Halls: Lineups, directions and info

Dental Disgrace In Croydon | News | Empty dentists' chairs in Croydon

Almost half the population in Croydon have not visited the dentist in at least two years reaveals a recent report.

An estimated 125,000 adults and 25,000 children in the borough have not even had a check up in that time, despite the fact that many dental practices in the area have the capacity to take on more NHS patients.

London Nutritionist Yvonne Bishop-Weston says "There is a lot of evidence to link good dental care with general overal health. Croydon health managers have had some great ideas but the tools are not getting into the hands of the people that matter, children's parents. A fantastic DVD has been produced about looking after your teeth but few people seem to know about it"

NHS Croydon sends a birthday card to toddlers in the borough when they turn three. As well as birthday wishes, it contains useful information for parents such as how much sugar is in chocolate bars and a voucher which can be exchanged for a Brushing For Life pack. This contains a kids' toothbrush, toothpaste and oral hygiene information to encourage parents to take their children to the dentist and take dental care seriously.

A DVD was created by the Trust’s Oral Health Promoter/Adviser from the salaried dental services with help from local children. The messages were evidence based, clear andpowerful: be aware of a sugary diet and brush your teeth twice daily! The DVD was enclosed with each birthday card and voucher.

Croydon Deep Diving in Total Place

Pilot projects float a new approach to area spending - Public Finance:

"Croydon Deep Diving in Total Place" What? a lot of waffle that means like other boroughs Croydon's public spending purse is going to be under serious pressure and a bit of joined up thinking is required to look at the bigger picture. A local Nutritionist hopes that looking at the bigger picture will help avoid previous questionable decisions and the lack of money will encourage a little more logical rather than blue sky thinking.

John Atkinson, managing director of the Local Government Association’s Leadership Centre, is co-ordinating the Total Place programme nationally. ‘We’re facing a term where the financial pressure is going to be considerable for a long period,’ he told Public Finance. ‘We’re going to have to start thinking very differently about some of the things we do.’

He sets out three ‘Cs’ – the customer: approaching services from the user’s perspective; count: how much money is spent; and culture: how things are done.

The process has certainly enthused public sector leaders. Jon Rouse, chief executive of the London Borough of Croydon – one of the 13 pilot areas – is excited about the programme’s potential.

"In Croydon, two parallel processes are in train: counting all the money that comes into the borough and a thematic ‘deep dive’. The latter is looking at children’s services, particularly the economic and social gains that can be made by focusing more on early intervention.

Rouse points out that far more money is spent on children as they progress through adolescence than in their first five years of life. This flies in the face of evidence showing that early, targeted interventions can reap a big dividend in terms of preventing social and criminal problems further down the line.

Shared initiatives such as Sure Start children’s centres have concentrated more on institutional structures, he says. But the flow of money through the different services, from midwifery and health visiting to working tax credits, can make a difference in supporting vulnerable families.

‘The idea is to look at the whole range of expenditure input to say: “Is there a better way of organising these, so they are targeted effectively through some sort of predictive methodology on families likely to have most need?”,’ Rouse adds."

The answers say organisations around the UK is staring Croydon Council in the face - preventative medicine. Even Doctors have a limited knowledge of basic nutrition so it's no wonder that parents think it's perfectly acceptable to send their children to school with a can of cola and a bag of crisps

However it's not as simple as 'just say no' says London Nutritionist Yvonne Bishop-Weston "we know from years of campaigning of "No","Don't" , "Stop" on anti smoking campaigns that negative messages don't work. We need to provide positive messages on healthy eating and get clever on motivational solutions. Food is a very emotional thing as we have seen with the reccession - everyone increases comfort eating.

"It's also very important that the authorities don't appear hypocritical, they need to lead by example. What message does it give out that the first thing you see when you walk into Mayday Hospital is a Burger King. It beggars belief that the health authorities at the time could have thought this was a good idea"

Wednesday, 9 September 2009

Can We Dig It? Croydon Vegetables

London Borough of Croydon: Current projects - Can We Dig It?

As part of The Croydon Food Festival there is the Can We Dig It? project.

Submit your photos of your favourite vegetables for an Art Exhibition in Croydon High Street.

999 Emergency in Croydon

Call for Croydon Council to introduce a '5 a Day Day' to save Croydon from a fate worse than death.

999 Emergency in Croydon Targeted by Health & Environmental Groups by Foods For Life London Nutrition - Yvonne Bishop-weston: ""

Health Professionals, Vegans, Vegetarians, Green Environmentalists, Animal Welfare Campaigners, Fair Trade groups, and a Radio Station are joining a concerted effort to put pressure on Croydon Council to be the first UK Council in the UK to designate one day a week to be meat free and focus on eating more fruit and vegetables and reach the target of 5 a day.

"It's easy" says Croydon Nutritionist Yvonne Bishop-Weston "It just takes a bit of practice - one day a week to focus on 5 a day is a great way to start!"

Tuesday, 8 September 2009

Send a Letter to Croydon Councillors

Animal Aid: Meat-Free Monday

Please use this letter to write to a Croydon Councillor or MP

Download Sample Letter

Croydon Councillors Here - Croydon Councillors

Croydon MPs are here  Croydon MP's (Right hand side of page half way down)

Meatless Monday : Meat Free Monday Goes Global

Meatless Monday : Meat Free Monday Goes Global

Meat Free Monday Campaigns are popping up all over the world - no wonder, one meatless day a week makes sense not just for a community's health but also for our environment struggling to cope with climate change. The trend was kicked off by the city of Ghent in Belgium

It makes sense - if we all focus on Croydon we can make our city a show-case instead of a lost case.

Meatless Mondays allegedly originated during World War I when the U.S. Food and Drug Administration urged families to avoid eating meat on Mondays to conserve food for the troops and feed starving populations in Europe. The program came back into play at the beginning of World War II because meat was being rationed, and it became a way for women at home to support the war effort.

No meat on a Friday is a big tradition in the UK originating from theCatholic Church and resulting in Friday as Fish and Chip shops busiest day. (Some people still think fish is vegetable)

Here's our pick of the bunch of support for Meat Free Days / Meat free Mondays

Meat Free Monday (Linda McCartney Products & The McCartney Family)

Meat Free Day Australia Aparently where Paul McCartney first heard of it but now in need of ressurection.

Meatless Monday Video - Meat Less Monday - Johns Hopkins University in USA - Bloomberg School of Public Health

Meat Free Mondays ( Good Life Foods sponsor this one.)

Meat Free Monday - Animal Aid's Pro-active Site

Meat Free Monday Taiwan
by the Society for the Advancement of Animal Wellbeing

Meat Free Monday Facebook - Animals Australia - Meatless Day Malaysia - Meat Free Day Belgium

Is Croydon the unhealthiest borough in London? (From Your Local Guardian)

Is Croydon the unhealthiest borough in London? (From Your Local Guardian): "A shocking 750 one-year-old babies in Croydon are already obese with a further nearly 3,000 children under the age of five and about 12,000 children under-15s also overweight.

The health authority has launched a £300,000 scheme to combat child obesity to try and deal with the problem.

The initiative called Boost Croydon includes a prevention plan for children under five and a treatment programme for children aged between four and 15 – as well as their families.

Active Boost is due to start this September and will help overweight and obese children lead healthier lifestyles through exercise and nutrition.

An NHS Croydon spokesman said: “These figures are concerning, but we are doing everything we can in Croydon to encourage people to live a healthy lifestyle."

Croydon Worst for Health

Londoners turn to cigarettes and alcohol in the recession | News: "A postcode map of London shows the situation is worst in Croydon where spending on alcohol and cigarettes has doubled, while consumption of fruit and vegetables is down by almost a fifth. East London has also seen a big increase in spending on 'vices' with a 79 per cent rise in tobacco sales and 115 per cent more going on ready meals.

David Soskin, spokesman for said: 'It is a worrying trend. London is making increasingly unhealthy choices, perhaps because there appears to be a misconception that healthy foods are more expensive than convenience snack foods.'"

Croydon Eco Veggie Fayre

Croydon Eco Veggie Fayre - The UK's Best Veggie Fayre's - the biggest vegan veggie eco friendly family day out in the UK

It all started with The Croydon Eco Veggie Fayre, (actually it all started with the Bristol Vegan fayre but that's a longer story). Just as Yaoh Hemp Foods, Off the Hoof, Veggievision, Foods for Life Nutrition and Health et al were laying down the foundations for a Festival of Sustainability and Health the news broke of Croydon's latest accolade.

The Croydon Guardian named (and shamed) Croydon as one of the unhealthiest boroughs in London. Research by mysupermarket. revealed Croydon spent more on cigarettes and alcohol whilst sales of fruit and vegetables had gone down not up!

Since Paul McCartney had relaunched his Meat Free Monday campaign with all his celebrity friends, many health campaigners had toyed with the idea of following Belgium City Ghent's example of going Meat Free once a week (like the old fish on a Friday tradition)

Nutritionist Yvonne Bishop-Weston and her husband, cookbook author Tony, decided a concerted effort was needed to encourage Croydon to focus on healthy plant foods, 5 portions of fruit and vegetables a day, at least once a week.

They launched CHOP ( the Croydon Healthy Office Project) .

Then they contacted all the main active UK health and sustainability campaigners such as Animal Aid, The Vegetarian Society, The Vegan Society, Viva!, PeTA, The Young Indian Vegetarians, Passion for The Planet Radio, Lifescape Magazine, Friends of The Earth, Veggies, The Vegan and Vegetarian Foundation to encourage them to join hands and work together to prove to Croydon Council the sense , logic and advantages of promoting a weekly meat free day.

Please help us.

Nutritionist Yvonne says "It's common sense - it's not more meat in our diets that we need to be healthier it's more fruit and vegetables! We have a golden opportunity to easily turn Croydon from being one of the unhealthiest communities to one of the healthiest"