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Great Plates Project

Richmond Grand Opening (United Kingdom)

To celebrate the opening of the Richmond store, the UK team invited kids to draw a plate of “Things I can grow and eat.”  700 submissions were created by children using the simple template below.  Ten finalists were selected to appear at the store opening and have their designed permanently imprinted on plates that are part of the store's permanent decor.  The project was so successful it was used again by the Cheltenham store.

This project could be used by any store to celebrate an anniversary, earth day or back to school.  The idea could be applied to tiles instead of plates if you want to create an ongoing mural.  There are a multitude of sources for applying a design to items including cafepress.com and zazzle.com.  


Twenty two Gloucestershire children and their parents were welcomed into Cheltenham’s new Whole Foods Market Store to celebrate their success in the ‘Great Gloucestershire Plates’ competition.

The children each created a winning design of a plate depicting their favourite dish of local food, to mark the store’s opening last week.  The designs were made up into real porcelain plates and now hang in pride of place for all to see at the store’s ‘Acorn’ cookery centre.

After their plates were unveiled, the children and their families were treated to a special VIP tour of the new 27,000 square foot store on the Tewkesbury Road.
“It was really exciting to take part in the competition as we had to think through all that we knew about local food, and then create our favourite meal as a design on a plate,” said 10 year old Rosie Broome, a pupil at  the Richard Pate School.  All the winners were also given a porcelain plate depicting their design, to take home.
More than five hundred children from eleven local schools originally rose to the challenge to create a ‘Great Gloucestershire Plate’.  These were then whittled down to 50 finalists, setting judges rugby star and Masterchef winner Phil Vickery, food artist Pam Staite, Whole Foods Markets Store Team Leader Mary Cunningham and Echo Editor Kevan Blackadder the challenging task of selecting the top designs. 

Judge Phil Vickery was impressed with the number and quality of entries.  He said: “This competition  attracted a fantastic number of entries and the standard was amazing with a huge variety of ideas and use of colour.  There’s so much kids can learn from a task like this – it really brings out the joy that food can bring.”
The schools taking part were Airthire, Charlton Kings Junior, Christ Church (Kidzone), Greatfield Park Primary, The King’s School,  St Edward’s Junior, St Mark’s Junior, Warden Hill Primary, The Richard Pate School, Holy Trinity Primary and Gloucester Road Primary.    The school that submitted the most entries was St Edward’s Junior School, which wins a Whole Foods Market chef demo for its pupils.
Whole Foods Market’s Store Team leader Mary Cunningham was delighted with the way the children really engaged with the competition: “We had such a great time when the winning kids and their families came into the store to receive their plates and see them displayed for the first time in the store.   All of the participating children showed real creativity and connection with local food – we even had Gloucester Squab pie featured!  But there was a blend with the new too, which was really interesting to see.”

Ends          November 2012

Issued on behalf of Whole Foods Market Cheltenham by Leapfrog PR.  Editorial contacts are Felicity Read, Sarah Wheeler and Hannah Ward on 01242 282000 or email felicity@leapfrogpr.com

Dear (Headteacher)

(A Taste of Gloucestershire)

We’d like to introduce you to an exciting new art challenge which gives your pupils the opportunity to get creative in a very tasty way.

To celebrate the opening of Cheltenham’s new Whole Foods Market store in September, we would like to invite your pupils to draw a plate of food which illustrates their favourite foods, or a meal, made from fresh, local products. These special ‘plates’ will be hung on the wall of the new Whole Foods Market store.
Whole Foods Market is looking for 20 local Gloucestershire schools to take part in the competition – but as participation is on a first come, first served basis, please don’t delay!

As prizes, replica plates will be presented to each of the winners’ schools and the pupils will be invited as a special VIP guest to the store opening in September.

As an extra incentive, the school that submits the most entries will receive an exclusive Chef’s cooking demonstration for their class to be held either at the school, or in the Chef’s demonstration area of the new store, with all ingredients supplied by Whole Foods Market.

Whole Foods Market is the world's largest retailer of natural and organic foods – and Gloucestershire is rich in local, natural foodstuffs including fruit and vegetables, local cheeses, rare breed meats, artisan breads, handmade puddings and delicious juices.  It is this rich heritage that Whole Foods Market celebrates through its support of local growers and by stocking and selling as much local produce as possible in the new Cheltenham store, which opens in September on the site of the former Homebase on the Gallagher Retail Park, Tewkesbury Road.
As well as the excitement of taking part in this competition, children will be able to develop their creative skills and learn about local food producers and the benefits of healthy eating.  They will also be part of the buzz that the opening of this new store will create, while your school will benefit from positive local publicity and the chance to showcase your pupils’ talents.

To register your interest in taking part and to receive an information pack and entry forms, please contact Sarah Wheeler on 01242 282000 or email sarah@leapfrogpr.com by (date)

We hope you will enjoy taking part in the (Taste of Gloucestershire) project, and look forward to hearing from you.

Kind regards

Store or PR rep