Sunday 16 October 2011

Churnalism to sell curry

According to reports in several papers, Rochelle Peachey has just been crowned 'Britain's curry queen' after eating curry 'for her last 29,565 meals'.

The Daily Star said:

Red-hot Rochelle Peachey has eaten curry for her last 29,565 meals.

The Mail said:

The mother of one, 49, from Gants Hill, Essex, has just been crowned the country's curry queen - after eating the spicy food for her last 29,565 meals.

It was National Curry Week last week and so some curry-related churnalism was to be expected. And here it was, produced by a well-known brand of curry sauce. Oh, and Peachey just happens to run a dating website which gets mentioned in most of the articles too.She's also written books about dating in which she appears to reveal that she eats a lot of seafood salad.

But 29,565 currys to the exclusion of everything else? Really?

Well, according to Peachey's comments in the Mail:

'I eat three curries a week and if I've got left overs I'll eat it for breakfast the next day.'

How can having it for 'her last 29,565 meals' equate to 'three a week'?

Indeed, if she was eating three curries a week, it would take 189 years to reach 29,565.

The Metro's version of the story claims instead that it is actually 29,565 'spicy meals' rather than just curry. But that wouldn't be so good for National Curry Week, would it?

When asked to confirm if she really had eaten that many currys, Peachey replied:


But she had been linking to the Mail and Star stories on Twitter. Asked then if anything in the story was accurate, or just a PR stunt, she replied:

It's not the most convincing response ever, is it?

And a comment on the Mail's article from a person named Rochelle states:

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