“Rather than restricting takeaway food we should seek to transform it, by making healthy food as visible, tasty, and cheap as unhealthy food.”

Fiona Godlee, editor in chief, British Medical Journal

The problem

Urban deprived areas are dominated by unhealthy takeaway food, increasing the risks of poor diets and health problems like obesity and type 2 diabetes.

The Solution

Healthy fast food outlets that are cheap, quick, close and tasty.

“Some local government money is being spent on healthy­ eating education programmes but those tend to be exercises in preaching to the converted… Compared to that the Box Chicken project starts to look like the only practical effort to do something.”

Jay Rayner, The Observer

So far…

  • 6 healthier mobile catering units (one of which named Box Chicken) set up in 5 London boroughs
  • 66% fewer calories, 53% less sugar, 40% less saturated fat, and 23% less salt, in each meal served (compared to a typical meal at a chicken shop)
  • 2711 meals sold over the test period
  • 200+ young people, teachers, youth workers, chicken shop workers and owners, nutritionists, and public health officials consulted in research


Chicken Shops: Fuelling London’s Youth

October 2, 2013

Infographic on the prevalence and effect of fast food outlets

Tori Flower and Kate Ferrier

Chicken Shops and Poor Diets

October 1, 2013

Summary of research findings including behavioural observation, survey of young people, local environment mapping, ethnography, chicken shop business profiling

Tori Flower and Tayo Medupin


Box Chicken Launch

Hadrian Garrard from Create London and Nick Stanhope discuss the need for practical interventions to tackle poor diets at the launch of Box Chicken, a pilot of a healthy fast food outlet.


nt  ef  createuf      hackney  newham  towerhamletsCamden


newradFeatured on New Radicals list, compiled by Nesta, the UK’s innovation foundation, and The Observer, naming the top people, projects and organisations offering innovative ways to tackle social challenges.


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