Martha Payne talks about NeverSeconds and Mary’s Kitchen

The girl who beat the bureaucrats

The girl who beat the bureaucrats

winner of prestigious Jamie Oliver food award

winner of prestigious Jamie Oliver food award

cooking porridge in Malawi

cooking porridge in Malawi

Martha Payne £100k raised for a kitchen in Malawi

Martha Payne £100k raised for a kitchen in Malawi

I am pleased to be able to report NeverSeconds has been awarded a prestigious food award from Jamie Oliver.

Congratulations Martha, it was well deserved.

Martha Payne is a nine-year-old primary school girl who writes NeverSeconds, a highly respected food blog about her school dinners. It is well-written, articulate, thoughtful and intelligent.

NeverSeconds is a delight to read.

A couple of weeks ago, worthless jobsworth at her local council acting like a bunch of playground bullies tried to close her blog down. Such was the public outcry they were forced to back down.

Martha has stimulated worldwide interest in food. At a time of increasing childhood obesity, when children are suffering type 2 diabetes (a disease usually associated with late middle age), when the food industry is peddling junk food aimed at children, then Martha is a breath of fresh air.

She has successfully improved the meals at her own school: better choice, bigger portions, more nutritious and appetising.

Martha does not just write about her school dinners. She invites comments from around the world. She has also raised over £100,000 for a kitchen for school children in Malawi. This will be called Friends of NeverSeconds.

To celebrate raising £100k, Martha held a Porridge Party, porridge being one of the staple foods in Malawi.

This lunchtime on the Food Programme on BBC Radio 4 it was said writers of food blogs were now more influential than food writers. Though they did not mention NeverSeconds.

At the end of the programme they invited nominations for Food and Farming Awards. I have nominated Martha and NeverSeconds, will you?

I cannot think of a more deserving recipient for the Derek Cooper Award than Martha and NeverSeconds as a writer who has raised awareness of food, especially with children, and raised more than £100,000 for a food kitchen in Malawi for schoolchildren, to be called Friends of NeverSeconds.

Martha has become part of a much wider debate and network both locally and nationally. This can be seen in her support for Mary’s Kitchen in Malawi and the invite to guest bloggers whilst she is in holiday.

I have to say I am very impressed by her runner beans in the polytunnel. Mine popped out the ground then got eaten by slugs and snails.

Martha is now on her school holidays, starting with a camping trip. She has invited guest blogs whilst on her trips, but I am sure we will be hearing from her too.

No 1 Top Story in The Digital Mission Daily (Sunday 1 July 2012).

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