Healthy Fast Food

An initiative aiming to combat obesity amongst children and young people and improve diets in low-income areas

A survey by the National Obesity Observatory in Autumn 2014 reported that one in three children aged 11–15 are overweight or obese and the Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs reported in March 2010 that obesity in 15-year-olds has tripled since 2007. There are 8,000 fast food outlets in London alone and few of these offer healthy options. However, the relative affordability of fast food outlets, their convenience and their frequent positioning near schools means that they are very popular among young people.

Following on from the successful Box Chicken pilot in 2013, Create once again partnered with social enterprise Shift to roll out a major new trial period across three London boroughs. Independent street vendors were established in Camden, Hackney and Tower Hamlets throughout September and October 2014 to provide healthy options that appealed to children and young people. All of the food provided was sold at an affordable price (meals under £2.50) and vendors were positioned up to 500m from a secondary school for a period of six months. The trial sought to establish which foods and vending styles appealed most to a young clientele so that a sustainable model can be set in place for the future.

The benefits to local young people were also be increased by our Create Jobs initiative, which provided opportunities for young people to train as sous chefs in the food outlets.

It is hoped that the project will be rolled out across the UK in the future, to provide a long-term nationwide solution to the problems of child obesity and convenience eating.


Riojaes Cuisine is a husband and wife outfit, which prides itself on their creation of Caribbean street food with a unique modern twist, as well as homemade sauces and marinades. They will be trading a pitch on Hackney Road (outside Mecca Bingo).

Soul Food Rocks is run by Yvette Thomas, foster carer, parent and keen cook, who serves her healthy take on Caribbean street food at markets and pop up events. They will be trading from a pitch on Estate Road, Tower Hamlets.

Arawak is run by brothers Robert and Stephen Robinson, who merge fresh Caribbean style food with worldwide fusion flavours. They cater for events and have a regular pitch at Greenwich Market.

In partnership with Shift