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What's the point of cooking?

Evangelists for cooking skills and real food are being sought by the Focus on Food Campaign. The campaign, supported by the RSA, promotes practical food education and healthy eating. It has teamed up with the English-Speaking union to launch the Great British Food Debate.

Schools are invited to run debates with the motion: "This house cannot see any merit in learning to cook." Roger Standen, co-director of Focus on Food. "There are so many people saying that you no longer need to cook because you can buy most of what you need pre-packaged from the supermarket, fast food outlets and restaurants. By looking at the control you have when you can cook and comparing that to what can happen when you can't cook, we hope the schools themselves become campaigners to ensure the motion is defeated."

The results from the debate will be presented to the Leith Commission which will present the findings to Parliament.

* For advice on holding a debate: Tel: 01422 383 191 Email:

* Focus on Food Campaign: www.waitrose.comfocusonfood

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