The British pea industry searches for the UK’s young pea chefs

The Young Pea Chef of the Year, run by the Yes Peas campaign, is back with a bang for a fourth year after teaming up with returning sponsor, The Ocado Foundation, to launch the nationwide cooking competition to find the country’s next top chefs.

The Young Pea Chef of the Year 2019 is officially open for entries and is on the lookout for three budding chefs to take the title across its three separate categories. These include Primary School up to Year 6 (age 4 – 11); Secondary School Years 7-8 (age 11 – 13); and Secondary School Years 9-11 (age 13 – 16).

The Young Pea Chef of the Year 2019 has been launched in association with The Ocado Foundation for the second year running, who will be offering each winning child a £500 donation for their school to fund ‘Grow-Your-Own’ projects, as well as a personalised cooking hamper for the winning chef worth £50.

Over the last three years, support from chefs, media and farmers across the UK has grown substantially, and with an incredible prize on offer from The Ocado Foundation, school children are invited to create a delicious dish using Britain’s favourite family vegetable, the humble pea, and delight the UK with their fantastic feasts. The competition aims to challenge budding young chefs to develop a healthy and delicious recipe which includes the Great British pea as the star of the show.

Rachel Green, Yes Peas! campaign ambassador and TV chef, said: “We’re thrilled to be returning in 2019 with the Young Pea Chef of the Year, now in its fourth year. The quality of entries we receive year-on-year is continuing to increase, especially after the introduction of the older category last year. We received over 200 fantastic recipes from children from across the UK in 2018, so we’re very excited to see what this year will bring. Thanks to the continued support from The Ocado Foundation for a second year, we hope to encourage even more young cooks to get involved and learn more about cooking with the Great British pea!

The competition will close for entries on Friday 26th April 2019, when a panel of judges, including TV chef Rachel Green, Suzanne Westlake, Head of Corporate Responsibility at The Ocado Foundation, and representatives from the British Growers Association including East Coast Viners and Beeswax Dyson, will shortlist five worthy Young Pea Chefs from each category to go through to the final.

Suzanne Westlake, Head of Corporate Responsibility at The Ocado Foundation, said: “We’re very pleased to be supporting such a lovely competition for the second year running. The quality of entries from last year was fantastic and we’re thrilled to be able to support young chefs and their schools with the tools to grow their own peas and continue with their cooking ambitions!”

The five finalists from each category will then be voted for by friends, family and schools, with the young chefs with the most votes winning a £500 donation from The Ocado Foundation to fund ‘Grow-Your-Own’ projects for their school as well as a personalised cooking hamper.

To enter the Young Pea Chef of the Year, in association with The Ocado Foundation, and for full terms and conditions, visit www.youngpeachef.co.uk. For pea recipe examples, visit www.peas.org.

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