As fears surrounding Covid-19 (also known as coronavirus) have spread throughout the world, there have been countless stories surfacing over the last few months of Chinese- and Asian-owned businesses and individuals falling victim to racism and ignorance.
Coronavirus Stirs Rumors and Racism Towards Chinese Eating Habits and Health
Chinese-owned businesses are now feeling the effects in full, with small businesses in many of the world’s Chinatowns reporting closures and losing as much as 70% of their business. While many are choosing to stay home for fear of the virus, this disproportionately affects Chinese-owned business thanks to age-old racist ideas that resurfaced in the early days of the virus — namely, that Chinese food is to blame for the spread of diseases like Covid-19.
Now, a new map project is trying to fight this trend. Compiled from input from Chinese food experts in cities around the world, the campaign “No Appetite for Ignorance” maps out Chinese-owned food businesses that may be “suffering from coronavirus-related misinformation and racist attacks” as a saddening side effect of Covid-19.
The list was spearheaded by China-based food tour group Untour, who also gave us last year’s glorious jianbing map, connecting businesses worldwide that specialize in one of China’s most beloved street foods.
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“As a China-based food tour operator, [we’ve] seen first hand the negative impact Covid-19 can have on small businesses,” writes Untour CMO Kyle Long. He adds:
“We just can’t stand by and watch rumors and false information circulate unabated while families lose their livelihoods.
“We hope that the No Appetite For Ignorance project can shed light on the issue, and encourage diners to support the businesses in their own community, while educating others about the issue.”
Diners can sign a pledge on the “No Appetite” site to educate others on the facts of Covid-19, and access a Google map embed that shows Chinese food businesses to support in their cities. Long says that the list is currently being updated daily with recommendations from each city.
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In times when rumors and misinformation are spreading as quickly as the coronavirus itself, it’s always best to take sensible precautions, but to also know when to take a stand when other people’s biases are taking the wheel.
Header image: courtesy Untour
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