Food for Thought

Greetings from The Slave Detective,

So I’ve been missing for a while. The Olympic events took up quite a lot of my time. I was in the opening ceremony of the Paralympics and spent quite a few hours with my blind chum practicing on our Tandem to get it right…..I’m sure you all saw us. lol

I’m back now and have lots to share with you. The Olympics were, as I predicted on my interview with The International Human Rights Group Podcast, well planned and executed.

The crowds were huge and friendly. The IHRG spent time on the Olympic site and saw with their own eyes how well things were planned out.

I was very fortunate to spend lots of time inside the Olympic stadium. What struck me was the food hall in the Olympic Village, choice and quality of foods available at the venue.

In the 1948 London Olympics London still had rationing. The British Team were instructed to bring their own packed lunches to the opening ceremony and local businesses were approached to supply food to athletes from various countries. Team USA were of course well supplied and other athletes, especially Team GB were seen helping themselves to the leftover food from The USA Team. They had no rationing.

An interesting fact was GB male athletes were supplied with free ‘Y’ fronts for taking part!

There were no special restaurants at the venues. The 2012 Olympics planned for 14,000,000 (million) meals over the Games and being ‘modern’ and ‘Hi-Tec’ sport science the athletes every want had to be met. Bespoke body fuelling was the catch word.

In the Olympic Village Food Hall every food was available including a 24hrs McDonalds, free to athletes. Now that is Bespoke Fuelling!

But McDonalds, Coke and Cadbury’s sponsored the games and ensured these would be the most successful games ever. Not just on the track and field but in Food History. This was the largest catering operation in the World EVER!

During The Beijing Games the Press made much comment on the poor quality of the food supplied. We all know haw the media can change a perspective of an event so since 2009 the planning was to make fresh, tasty, ethnically challenged stadium food.

I can say as a frequent visitor to the park this was achieved. Also contrary to popular belief the food was well priced and fresh water was available free. If you turned up with your water container to the airport like security you had to dispose of the liquid but were quickly informed that water fountains were available inside so keep your container.

But as I have previously stated, for me an important factor was the commitment to fair trade products from the main sponsors.

McDonalds used only sustainably obtained Marine Stewardship Certified fish, with a legacy commitment that reaches across Europe from this point onwards.

Cadbury supplied only Fair-trade Products with the Fair-trade logo not only displayed on their stands but prominently with The Olympic Logo for a One World Olympics.

Contrary to popular beliefs there were substantial consumer choices (Not just the largest McDonalds in the World) with many varied food concessions.

I tried a few and they were great.

Even Coke, who sponsored the Atlanta ‘Coca cola’ Games pledged to offer the widest range of beverages available at any gathering with 75% of all drinks either low calorie or smoothes.

There was also what my grandfather called ‘Corporation Pop’ also available free. Water!

So ….The Olympic Games have concluded and been heralded as a great success.

Much has been spoken of the legacy that will be left. What will it be and how will the Games Park be used.

One legacy that will remain is the major companies standing by and supporting Fair-Trade products. This is a great step for the prevention of Human Trafficking for Forced Labour.

I leave you with one last thought.

 

Would Mr Bolt have turned up with his own packed lunch for the 2012 Games like the GB team did in 1948. We are a long way down that road but there is much further to go.

 

Let us hope the 2016 Games are already planning Fair-Trade in their Games.Image

 

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