To this day, Philip and June Jo continue to be committed to helping kids and families have a better understanding of what and how they eat. The business started off as a pop-up bookstore that could be found at farmers’ markets and harvest festivals. The Lees also attend many conferences for science and reading teachers, librarians, nutritionists, food activists, and chefs throughout the year. Together, this dynamic duo also created #FoodHeroes to get kids interested in where food comes from and one of the more prevalent #FoodHeroes is Farmer Will Allen; a former basketball star turned urban farmer and educator.
Another modern #FoodHero is CHEF ROY CHOI AND THE STREET FOOD REMIX ; a Korean American chef who gained prominence as the creator of the gourmet LA Korean taco truck, Kogi. He is a chef who is celebrated for “food that isn’t fancy” and is known as one of the founders of the gourmet food truck movement.
Roy has earned a stellar reputation for giving Korean and Mexican food a culinary “remix” while also creating jobs in communities. This book has appealed to kids from elementary age to high schoolers in a big way and is also the recipient of the Robert F. Seibert Award Honor Book for Most Distinguished Informational Book 2018 by the Association of Library Services for Children (ALSC), a division of the American Library Association.
“Since the first of the year, we’ve traveled to numerous educational conferences and it was especially gratifying to hear from librarians that children in rural Kentucky, Arkansas, and Texas, which are mostly white, are enjoying CHEF ROY CHOI’s story about a Korean American chef in urban LA serving Korean BBQ on a taco truck,” Philip noted. “I’m so glad that our food story can introduce children to new cultures and the immigrant experience. Last month NPR also mentioned Readers to Eaters in Children’s Publishing House Takes Food Literacy Literally. We’re so glad that our mission to promote food literacy is getting recognized.”
R2E’s books do include the idea of food prep and harvest, but these unique books embrace immigration, social justice, food literacy, self-identification and exploring the traditions behind food. Food can be so much more than a meal as well. Food supports community building and bringing people together.
“Our mission is to tell the cultural story of American through food and amazing books for readers of all ages.”~ Philip Lee
To learn more about Readers to Eaters, visit their website.