FeedYourHappy

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#FeedYourHappy

When we eat organic, we feel happy.

Because we know it means high standards of animal welfare, fewer pesticides, no artificial additives, preservatives or routine use of antibiotics. We're inviting people to add happiness to the world and their lives by feeding their happy with organic - and to experience the unadulterated joy of organic food.

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Sara Cox, one of the UK's best loved BBC presenters, is the face of our new campaign. Sara will be sharing her happy food stories to celebrate the joy of eating organic food and will be encouraging the nation to share their stories via social media, using the hashtag #FeedYourHappy.

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Buying organic means:

  • Fewer pesticides
  • No artificial additives or preservatives
  • Always free range
  • High standards of animal welfare
  • No routine use of antibiotics
  • No GM ingredients

Sara Cox explains why organic food feeds her happy.

Sara Cox

Sara Cox is helping herself to a wholemeal scone that manages to be just wholesome enough without being too worthy. Behind us, cook and food writer Rosie Birkett is chopping tomatoes, picking herbs and slicing lemons ready for a lavish dinner later that night, but for now, lunch is a scone and time is precious.

Which is the story of Sara's life: successful DJ, radio and TV presenter, mother to three children and now ambassador to the Organic Trade Board's #FeedYourHappy campaign, busy doesn't even begin to describe it. But food, and organic food in particular, has become a passion. "I had Lola when I was just 29", she says "and being pregnant for the first time made me really think about what I was putting in my body." The former ladette had to seriously change her lifestyle. "You want to stay healthy for your kids. You feel bad treating your body badly."

Sara grew up on a farm, with a father who had a great deal of respect for his animals and their welfare, and a mother who always cooked fresh, hearty food for the family. "We didn't have lots of money, but my mum would make things like ham hock with celery and carrots, have some now and freeze the rest." A normal, healthy attitude towards food is something she's trying to replicate in her own family. "When I was a model, so many people had a difficult relationship with food, surrounded by girls who were size 6 or 8. With my own daughters, I just want them to think 'a little of what you fancy does you good'. Not stuff with lots of chemicals and additives."

And that's why organic matters. The kids, she says, will automatically go to the fridge and help themselves to strawberries or whatever's inside - naturally they won't wash it but, Sara says, at least she knows there's no nasty pesticides. Or she might be chopping carrots for dinner: "They'll only eat them under duress when they're cooked. So I'll just start preparing them and they'll sort of nick chunks of them from the counter". A model tale of how to get kids to eat veg without the fuss.

"I do cook with my kids. It helps get them more interested in food, especially my lad. We should all be teaching boys to cook, it's not the 1950s, after all." Her eldest daughter bakes, too: "She's 13 now and can just get on with it. She's in charge of all the birthday cakes for the family". And despite her hectic work schedule and commitments, Sara really does try to make sure they all sit down to eat together every night. "I always remember a friend I had, her mum would cook amazing food but wouldn't sit down to eat it, she'd just stand and watch everyone else. I never want to be like that. I want my kids to see me enjoying food and keeping it all in balance."

It doesn't have to cost a fortune, either, she insists: the market for organic food nowadays is fine tuned to the needs of consumers. "Organic milk and yoghurt, for example, it's very competitively priced - it's the same with fruit and veg. And although we're trying to eat less meat - if you're going to buy a chicken I think organic tastes better because it's taken longer to grow and eaten good stuff from the ground like it's supposed to. And of course, if you've paid a bit more you'll really try not to waste anything. Making leftovers into a curry on a Monday night, for example."

#FeedYourHappy is about all of this: family, food, friends, as well as respect for the environment and animal welfare. In the kitchen space behind us, Rosie Birkett is busy making dinner: she's cooking a special meal with all of Sara's favourite foods that makes her feel really happy. "We're going to have roast chicken, and Rosie will show me what to do with an aubergine because I honestly never know what to do with them. And tomato salad, I love that. I just like food that's simple, fresh, organic and cooked nicely - nothing too fussy." Sara Cox cooking

At home, she loves to rifle through cookbooks: "I love books like Lindsey Bareham's Dinner Tonight - it's straightforward, not glossy, with loads of good ideas for basically simple, nice dinners." She mentions a Fearne Cotton recipe, courgettes and asparagus with a Parmesan crust. And of course, like everyone, she surfs the internet for recipes to use up odd bits of ingredients. "I look in the fridge and hate wasting food. It's all got to be eaten, which drives my husband slightly mad. Mind you, the worst thing I tried making was cod and cauliflower. I did it with rice and it honestly looked like a ghost plate."

Tonight, though, there is definitely no danger of that. The table is a riot of colour, heaped with vegetables and fruit, the chicken roasting away in the oven. Sara seems so down earth, so well balanced - does she even have a food nemesis? "Dill", she says firmly. "I'd definitely put that in Room 101." This is fortunate - Rosie was about to lace the tomato salad with dill. She forages in the fridge, hastily, for an alternative. "How do you feel about lovage?" The salad is rescued, dill free, the friends are arriving, dinner will soon be served, and everyone is happy.

Sara Cox launches #FeedYourHappy, a campaign to celebrate and share the unadulterated joy of organic food - when you eat organic, it feeds your happy - fewer pesticides, always free range and no artificial colours and preservatives. Sara is encouraging the nation to join in and share their favourite organic foods and meals at #FeedYourHappy

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