Jamie Oliver Food Foundation is set to close

23 May 2019 News

Trustees plan to shut down the Jamie Oliver Food Foundation (JOFF), but the television chef has launched a new anti-obesity project through a "a commercial business with a social purpose".

According to its most up-to-date set of annual accounts, covering the year to 31 December 2017, the foundation, which was set up by the celebrity chef, had been scaling back its activity because it had fulfilled its mission.

It also said that it had struggled financially due to the losses made at the time by Fifteen Restaurant Limited, which was run as a social enterprise, and was in 2017 a subsidiary of the charity. Its accounts said that it intended to transfer Fifteen Restaurant Limited to the Jamie Oliver Group of Companies with the aim of returning it to a profit-making company. 

The annual report said: “The trustees have decided to wind down the activities for JOFF within the next 12 months”. It added that “the charity is considered to have fulfilled its original purpose.”

The charity’s income for the financial year ending 31 December 2017 was £1.6m. In the same year, it spend £2.2m, creating a deficit of £600,000. Fifteen Restaurants usually donates a sum to the charity but due to making a loss, was unable to in 2017.

In June 2017 JOFF transferred the activities of its Ministry of Food programme, which works with schools and universities to teach nutrition and cooking skills, to Jamie Oliver Limited, a private company.

"Through its commercial audience and partnerships and as part of the companies' corporate social responsibility activities, the board felt that JOL would be best placed to further deliver the MOF programme," the accounts said. 

The charity, which objects are to increase food education and reduce the impact of diet related disease, was founded in 2002 and has one trustee, Louise Elizabeth Jane Holland, who is also the director of Jamie Oliver’s other companies. 

The charity’s website domain has been suspended, and its social media pages have been deleted. An alternative website link that comes from an automated email when contacting the charity links to the general campaigns section of Jamie Oliver’s website.

New project

The report also revealed plans for Jamie Oliver to create a new charity. It said that in early 2018, the foundation received a grant to set up a new charity to halve childhood obesity by 2030.

In April 2018 Oliver launched an anti-obesity campaign via a blog on his website

The 2030 project is being run by the Jamie Oliver Group, which describes itself as "a commercial business with a social purpose". 

JOFF has not yet been removed from either the register of companies or the register of charities and Civil Society News 

Civil Society News attempted to reach The Jamie Oliver Food Foundation for comment.  

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