Free meals for skinny models

Size zero models in town for London Fashion Week now have one less excuse to skip a meal.

15 Feb 2007

A restaurant popular with celebrities and fashionistas in the British capital is offering free food to skinny models who have come under attack for promoting a stick-thin image which critics says encourages eating disorders in young women.

Bumpkin restaurant in trendy Notting Hill is offering models with a Body Mass Index (BMI) of less than 18 the opportunity to gorge on fish pies, lamb burgers, king prawns and scallops.

"If I could recommend a dish to a size zero model, it would be a charter pie containing leeks, chicken and bacon; it's enough to keep you warm and energised all day," Bumpkin general manager Dariush Nejad said in a statement on Monday.

The issue of size zero or "skinny models" has dogged fashion shows around the world after two anorexic Latin American models died last year and has been under the international spotlight during the spring fashion season in New York, Milan, Paris and London, which began on Sunday.

Madrid last year banned models with a BMI below 18 from taking part in fashion shows. BMI is a measure expressed as a ratio of weight to height. A BMI limit of 18 means a 5-foot-8 inch model must weigh at least 120 pounds (54 kg).

Models with a BMI of less than 18 who visit Bumpkin for lunch or dinner will be invited to select any food off the menu, simply by showing their modeling card which states if they are size zero, the restaurant said.

The restaurant boasts of its popularity with the London glitterati, saying recent visitors included fashion designer Stella McCartney, filmmaker Guy Ritchie, popstar Simon le Bon and his wife Yasmin.

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