Chef stars signed-up to front Climate Week 2012 food focus

Awareness campaign Climate Week will switch focus for next year’s event after signing up Masterchef winner Tim Anderson and celebrity chefs Angela Hartnett and Prue Leith to front activity promoting a climate-friendly approach to food.

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The campaign, in its second year, has also revealed Tesco is returning to be the headline sponsor for the second year running. EDF Energy and Aviva are also returning as sponsors, while the recently relaunched SodaStream is also backing the 2012 event.

The launch of the campaign last year was dogged by negative reaction to its choice of corporate sponsors which have previously been accused of not doing enough to be sustainable.

Although the company that attracted the most criticism last year, RBS, is absent from this year’s sponsor list, the inclusion of EDF only a month after it was found guilty of spying on Greenpeace activists will undoubtedly prove controversial.

However, Kevin Steele, founder of the campaign, which uses a series of events to highlight the positive steps taken by communities across the country to combat climate change, says its essential to use “companies at the four corners of our economy” to ensure mainstream penetration.

Steele says the sponsors are all taking “solid, tangible” measures to drive down their carbon emmissions and help both consumers and suppliers to take similar steps, and says that critics should look at “facts” rather than “perception.”

He says the 2011 event saw nearly half a million people attend over 3,000 events, which included the Climate Week Awards and the Climate Week Challenge which saw school children come up with inventions that would save carbon and money.

A poll by Ipsos Mori after this year’s event in March showed 28 per cent of people were aware of the Climate Week brand, following over 1k pieces of media coverage, including a dedicated Blue Peter and a Feature on The One Show.

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