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Dublin: 11°C Tuesday 9 August 2022

Ban on 9-year-old food critic lifted

Ban was criticised as being “daft” after a surge in support from celebrity backers including Jamie Oliver.

The nine-year-old budding food critic
The nine-year-old budding food critic
Image: Never Seconds blog via Never Seconds blog

A SCOTTISH COUNCIL  has said it will not stop a nine-year-old schoolgirl from taking photos of the food in her school cafeteria and posting it online.

Martha Payne from Lochgilphead, Argyll, was initially gagged (not literally) by Argyll and Bute Council , which said that cafeteria staff feared losing their jobs after she started  posting the images to her site Never Seconds six weeks ago.

However the council’s leader told the BBC that the ban was being lifted, after a storm of criticism about it being “daft.”

Payne’s website has recieved close to three million hits since going live, and received the support and praise of many in the food and cooking industry.

Celebrity Chef Jamie Oliver sent her his ‘Jamie’s Great Britain’ book with the message: ”Great Work. Keep it up!”

The NeverSeconds blog started off as a writing project with her father to raise funds for the Mary’s Meals Charity, which sets up school feeding projects in poor countries. To date, she has raised €3,000 for it. Payne took photos of her lunch and commented on how good it was.

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In one post about chicken fajitas, she wrote: ”I’d really like to know where the chicken comes from so I am going to write to the lady in charge to ask. I know it comes from a hen but I’d like to know where the hen lived.”

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