Jamie Oliver

Jamie Oliver

Jamie Oliver

  • Profession: Celebrity chef
  • Place/Date of Birth: Clavering, Essex, 27 May 1975

Jamie picks rival's food labelling - Feb 2 2008
Jamie Oliver has risked another row with Sainsbury's by opting for rival supermarket giant Tesco's nutrition labelling system for his new food range.

The celebrity chef was forced to apologise last month after he was reported as criticising Sainsbury's - with whom he has a £1.2 million-a-year advertising deal - for not participating in a TV debate on battery-farmed chickens.

Now it has emerged that Oliver's new range of sauces, oils and salads will shun the "traffic light" food nutrition guides employed by his paymasters. These use red, amber and green to indicate high, medium and low levels of fat, salt and sugar.

Instead Oliver's products will feature the single-colour labels favoured by Tesco, which show fat, salt and sugar as a percentage of the recommended guideline daily amount (GDA).

Representatives of the 32-year-old chef insisted the decision had been made in the interests of the consumer and was not a slight on Sainsbury's.

Jane Hilton, head of marketing for Fresh Retail Ventures, which markets the Jamie Oliver food range, told The Grocer magazine: "Both labelling schemes were looked at, but we decided that GDAs gave clearer information than traffic lights to allow consumers to make a decision."

A spokesman for Oliver said: "The food range has nothing to do with Sainsbury's, it's a totally separate thing... There's no connection at all - there isn't a slight because it's just not relevant."

Jamie’s knicker-bocker glory - Jan 29 2008

Jamie Oliver has apparently become so famous that obsessed women are giving him their undies.

The 32-year-old TV chef, who is happily married to Jools, reportedly revealed that on a recent Eurostar trip, a flirty female member of staff left her knickers in his luggage to show her devotion.

Jamie told the Daily Star: "After the trip I found a woman’s knickers in my bag. That was a real surprise when I got back home. She was the hostess on the train and quite flirtacious."

He added: "It makes sense as she was the only one with access to my bag. She must have returned to England commando, because I had her undies!"

Jamie, who married childhood sweetheart Jools in 2000, said they are very happily married although she suspects he has a crush on Sienna Miller.

"I keep telling her I don’t fancy anyone else but she doesn’t believe me. Sienna is very beautiful but Jools is gorgeous... I am very happy with Jools... she is more than enough to put up with!"

Jamie’s restaurant in egg ’cock-up’ - Jan 16 2008

The serving of battery eggs in a restaurant backed by celebrity chef and free-range campaigner Jamie Oliver has been declared a "cock-up."

The eggs were used at the beachside Fifteen Cornwall restaurant when the chef’s TV programme on UK chicken and egg production - Jamie’s Fowl Dinners - was going out on Channel Four last Friday.

The battery eggs were spotted by a party of farmers and battery egg producers who were dining that night at the restaurant, overlooking Watergate Bay.

"It was a cock-up - we pride ourselves on knowing where everything comes from," said restaurant chief executive Dave Meneer on Wednesday.

Jamie is a trustee of the Fifteen Foundation charity, which runs the Cornish restaurant - and three others - to train disadvantaged youngsters to be chefs.

Mr Meneer said Jamie was "clearly p***** off" by what had happened, and was reported as saying "heads will roll."

He said he had "read the riot act" to staff at the restaurant and procedures had been tightened up.

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The young person’s, modern day Delia, Jamie Oliver catapulted himself to fame following a chance meeting at the River Café, he now commands millions for advertisements, has created a socially aware restaurant empire and influenced what our children eat at school.

Despite his slightly grating, ‘cockney’ accent, our Jamie’s actually a born and bred Essex boy. Having been raised to landlord parents he started working in a professional kitchen at the tender age of 11, when he used to peel the veg for the Sunday Roast at the pub.

He trained at Westminster Catering College and spent some time studying in France. On his return to London he bagged himself a job as head pastry chef at the Antonio Carluccio restaurant on Neal Street, before heading over to Rose Gray and Ruth Rogers gastro-delight The River Café. It was here that he was apparently ‘spotted’, whilst a television crew were in doing a dash of filming, and the result was ‘Naked Chef’ in 1998.

His new, fresh and relaxed approach to presenting and food in general went down a storm with the British public and another series followed shortly after in 1999. Over the years his stake in primetime television has grown with a number of successful programmes, including Jamie’s Kitchen, Jamie’s Great Italian Escape and Oliver Twist.

In 2000 Jamie became the ‘face of Sainsburys’, which saw the chef earn a reputed £1.2 million per year, whilst appearing in rather cringe worthy ads left, right and centre of the television scheduling programme. His over exposure led to a bit of a backlash with caricatures of him springing up on the comedy circuit; think big lips, wads of cash, ‘mockney’ accent and floppy wife.

If the Sainsburys deal signalled a temporary fall from grace for the Essex boy, then the series Jamie’s Kitchen saw him return from the back of the pack to take gold. The programme followed the chef as he launched his flagship Fifteen restaurant in London. Part of a charitable foundation, the business offers training for underprivileged kids and branches have gone on to be launched in Newquay, the Netherlands, Amsterdam and Melbourne.

Jamie’s social conscious doesn’t end there either – in 2005 the geeza chef took on the British education system, with a good, long, hard look at what we were feeding the minds of tomorrow – fat, salt and sugar being the main ingredients. The series signalled a social crisis in parliament and forced the Government to reassess school dinners around the country, with the aim of educating our kids about food and it’s origins, whilst providing them with a well-rounded diet.

In 2003 he was awarded an MBE in the Queen’s Birthday Honours List.

He married Juliette Norton in 2000 and the couple have two daughters.

February 2008

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