Culture

Equity at the Table Gives Marginalized Voices a Chance

It's author Julia Turshen's way of tackling the industry's lack of representation
Equity at the Table from Julia Turshen
Photo: Tasting Table 

There's a new food website you'll want to add to your bookmarks, and though it won't tell you what to eat this month based on your horoscope, it will ultimately change the way you interact with the food world.

Equity at the Table (EATT), from cookbook author and activist Julia Turshen, is a searchable directory of female food professionals that includes writers, chefs, artists and lawyers, many of whom are also part of the LGBT community or are persons of color. The platform's ultimate goal is to solve the glaring lack of representation in food, whose mediums, whether it be restaurants, TV shows, magazine articles or festivals, have been traditionally dominated by straight white males.

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"A major issue is that diversity is assumed to be the same thing as inclusivity and equality is often confused for equity," Turshen tells Food & Wine. "The difference between these things is not just asking who is invited to the table, but who gets to do the inviting and how welcoming is that table? EATT is a resource we can all use to shift the food industry in a more equitable direction."

The site is built on the philosophy that it's better to "build a longer table, not a higher fence," an idea Turshen learned from writing Feed the Resistance, which shows readers how to use cooking as a channel for political action. Eat at the Table's entire directory can be filtered by profession, location, and ethnic or sexual identification, all as a way to celebrate and bring marginalized voices into the spotlight of the food community. 

"Putting together Feed the Resistance helped me better understand how I could use my own platform as a cookbook author to move the industry I call home in a forward-moving direction," Turshen says.

Pull up a chair to Equity at the Table or help support the project by donating here.

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