The first edition of Fare Healthy Festival held at the Paradise last January was an instant hit which took the clean-eating world by storm. So we were super excited to hear that the event will be back on the 27th of September to showcase some of the best in healthy eating, fitness and wellbeing at London's iconic Borough Market. It promises to be bigger and better than before, with healthy chefs Deliciously Ella, Hemsley+Hemsley and Amelia Freer sharing their nutrition tips and a host of exercise and mindfulness classes on the menu. Oh and of course, there will be food - don't miss our favourite guilt-free cakes by clean patissiere Henrietta of Hen's Clean Cakes in the 'Have a Go' Area!
To celebrate the return of Fare Healthy, we had a chat with none other than its creator Rose Lloyd Owen. A keen foodie, Rosie swapped a career in media to set up her catering venture Peardrop London: a healthy lunch delivery service wholefoods and natural food, made using seasonal and sustainable ingredients (and packaging) and always beautifully presented (naturally, she is one of our favourites to follow on Instagram!). She then went on to set up the festival with events expert Shelley Martin Light - and the rest is history!
We track the festival's rise to fame and quiz Rose about her wellbeing and nutrition philosophy below...
- Your first event was a wonderful success. What inspired you to launch it?
Thank you. When Shelley and I met at the Paradise in January 2014, we instantly hit it off, bounced ideas off each other and talked for months about putting on an event. I guess Fare Healthy was born out of my passion for food and cooking, combined with her experience in events and our burgeoning interest in health and wellness. So many people were me asking for advice on healthy eating – for example how to use coconut oil, or ideas for nutritious midweek suppers. We wanted to create a day out that was fun but also a little informative – an experience that might help people realise that a healthy lifestyle can be achievable, affordable and enjoyable. When we happened to mention the idea to Jasmine, Melissa (of Hemsley+Hemsley) and Ella (Woodward of Deliciously Ella), they loved it, which really helped us make it a reality.
- If you could sum up what Fare Healthy is all about in one simple sentence, what would that be?
It’s a celebration of your health and happiness – a feel good festival of food, fitness and wellbeing where we can all come together to learn, eat, sweat and enjoy an inspiring day.
- What was your favourite moment from the last Fare Healthy Festival?
It was totally crazy for Shelley and me. We were running around all day like headless chickens. This time round we have an amazing team to support us so it’ll hopefully be a little easier. My favourite moment was when it was all over and we sat down together for a glass of wine!
- How do you source the people and partners that you work with?
It’s actually really difficult to choose because there are so many brilliant brands out there, more and more each month, and I wish we could have everyone. But mostly we just keep our eyes out for things and people we love. And we tried out a lot of exercise classes!
- What is the best part about running Fare Healthy? And the one you find the most difficult?
At the moment I am loving getting creative with the look and the layout of the festival. It’s also such good fun meeting and getting to know so many people and brands and bringing everyone together. People’s enthusiasm is very rewarding. Like any business, weighing up where to spend and where to save can be very hard. The budget is tight and we constantly have to make decisions about what really matters to us. Putting on such a large event does leave you with a lot of sleepless nights!
- Since the festival is all about wellbeing, how do you prepare yourself in the lead up to the event – do you have any routines or rituals to help you get through this very busy time?
With my catering business, Peardrop, I have to work very long hours and late into the night so I know how essential it is to make sure you look after yourself to make it sustainable. It’s always tempting to reach for the sugar but it leaves you with an energy slump in the end. I won’t be in the kitchen as much usual in the run up to the festival, so I’ll prep some healthy snacks for the team - green smoothies, kale crisps and raw red onion and sun-dried tomato crackers. Of course we give ourselves treats when we’re working so hard - Monmouth Coffee is our guardian angel! I try to remember to carry a bottle of water with me when I’m on site, so I don’t forget to drink as I’m running around.
- Who are your idols/ inspirations in the kitchen?
I’ve always loved Jamie Oliver, I had a subscription to his magazine for years which taught me a lot about cooking. He is a genuine hero – fighting for what he believes, not to better his own career, but to better the lives of others.
- Do you have a particular eating ethos?
Our bodies are all unique and different things work for different people. I believe in finding out what works for you and not cutting out a food group because everyone else is. We have vilified gluten and dairy, which is putting a strain on farmers. People have been eating bread and drinking milk for centuries and if it works for you, it can be part of a balanced diet. Having said that, I love helping people with intolerances discover more and more delicious ways of eating. It’s obvious but we need to adapt our diets to our individual lifestyles. A mostly sedentary person shouldn’t eat too many carbs, but if you’re active, a bowl of pasta is not a crime.
- What would be your top wellbeing/nutrition tip for anyone who wants to be healthier?
- For me, being healthy should be about having a happy relationship with food. Enjoy it and indulge in it sometimes – it’s a communal pleasure and that’s what Fare Healthy is all about.
- Keep it simple. If it comes from the ground or a tree, it’s good for you. Don’t obsess over the calories of a sweet potato. Losing weight and being healthy is not the same thing.
- Also: sleep is the answer. We all need different amounts of sleep, but work out what’s best for you and try stick to it. Then move your legs as much as possible when you’re not asleep. Easy!