The celebrity chef told the newspaper: “We are backsliding as a society in every respect, and it’s very distressing.
“We’re in a very dangerous situation. There is so much horrendous stuff going on in the world. We’re heading for extinction. I just wish someone would wake up to the seriousness of the situation.
“We need young people… to get rid of all this old rubbish and do something new, do something different.
‘We all have a responsibility to do something’
“We’re waiting for something to come along – another leader, another prime minister, somebody to come and do something. But really each of us has a responsibility.
“What I think is sad is that we’ve had that responsibility dampened – we think we’re not important, we’re just ordinary people. I think we all can do something. It’s big, big, big stuff.”
Smith was previously a long-time Labour supporter, but she told a Telegraph subscribers’ event last June that she no longer was because they were not “any good”.
In her FT interview, Smith also revealed that she has no regrets about quitting television a decade ago.
She said: “When you’ve been through 20 seasons of asparagus, there’s not an awful lot left you can do with it. Know what I mean?”
She said she disliked MasterChef and never watches The Great British Bake Off, adding that seeing the likes of fellow famed chefs Prue Leith and Mary Berry still on TV makes her think “thank God they’re doing it”.
She said that she still loves food and cooking, but has lost interest in foodie culture and cooks far less nowadays as “the standing is quite hard”, instead preferring to let her husband of 52 years, Michael Wynn-Jones, serve up dishes instead.