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Brussels, 15 May 2007

European Commission launches "EU Mini-chefs," a website for children on healthy cooking

The European Commission and Euro-toques International, the European Chefs' association, today launched "EU Mini-chefs" - a website for children which aims to contribute to the fight against child obesity by encouraging healthy eating and cooking. It promotes the European Day for Healthy Food and Cooking, to be celebrated on 8 November 2007. On that day chefs across the EU will demonstrate to children how to cook and eat healthily in schools and restaurants. The website also outlines how children can take part in a drawing contest for a poster to be used in the campaign. It provides an internet forum on healthy food & cooking for parents, teachers and children. The website includes simple healthy recipes and cooking advice from some of the best chefs of Europe.

EU Health Commissioner Markos Kyprianou said: "Obesity is on the rise in Europe, especially among children. Each year over 400,000 more children become overweight or obese in the EU. It is everybody's responsibility to counter this trend. Today we are joining forces with Euro-toques International to launch a website for children to help them understand the importance of eating and cooking in a healthy way. We want to encourage children, teachers and parents to develop good habits for healthy food."

Through EU Mini-chefs the Commission and Euro-Toques International are also launching a drawing contest for European schoolchildren. The competition's theme is: "the pleasure of eating well in Europe." The drawing that wins the contest will be used throughout the Union as the poster for the European Day of Healthy Food and Cooking.

The website

The url of EU.Minichefs is:

This website for children demonstrates that eating healthily can be fun and inexpensive. The EU Mini-chefs website promotes the European Day for Healthy Food and Cooking and displays the rules of a drawing contest for children. It also provides a European forum for healthy food and cooking with first class healthy recipes and cooking advice. Several email newsletters will be produced. The website will soon be available in 12 languages and will include an interactive cooking game so that children can learn by playing.

The drawing contest

The drawing contest is addressed to children, aged 9-12 years, that will take part through their class. Teachers will coordinate the participation of children in the competition. The contest starts today and ends June 30th. The results will be announced in September 2007. The Euro-toques International national offices will receive the drawings and will chose the winners of each national prize, which will be an invitation to a Euro-Toques International restaurant.

The European winner will be selected by a jury in Brussels and will be announced in September 2007. The best drawing will be used as a poster to promote the 8th of November event. Furthermore, the European prize will include an invitation to Brussels for the winning class and their teacher to attend the prize giving ceremony in September/October 2007. It will also include an invitation to the Mini-Europe Park in Brussels.

November 8, 2007

During this day, in most EU countries, Euro-toques International chefs will either visit a local school to carry out workshops or invite a class into their restaurant for lunch and a chat on healthy cooking. This will happen in the 17 countries which are members of Euro-toques International, a European community of chefs who promote the European cooking heritage and culture. The Euro-toques International member countries are: Germany, Belgium, Bulgaria, Cyprus, Denmark, Spain, Finland, France, Greece, Ireland, Italy, Luxemburg, the Netherlands, Portugal, Sweden, Switzerland and San Marino. Around 1 000 schools and 20 000 children are expected to participate in the event.

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