Activism

Three Barbers encouraging Black Community in New Orleans to Go Vegan

Vegan Wit a Twist is a 100% Plant-Based Pop-Up Restaurant

Barbers shops have a unique place within the black community. Everyone passes through giving the barbers a unique insight into community needs. In New Orleans, this has led to Roy Joseph, Ryan Billew and Ollie Williams to establish Vegan Wit a Twist as reported by WeBuyBlack.

The idea began when Joseph would regularly bring vegan food that he had prepared to the barber’s shop. He had decided to go vegan about a year ago. He was tired of seeing the same warnings about meat in the media every month. It did not take long for the patrons to rave about his cooking – people were finding out through his cooking that being a vegan does not mean eating bland tasteless food. So he began to look seriously into the idea of a vegan restaurant with the help and encouragement of Billew and Williams. 

Vegan New Orleans style

The result was the trio opening the restaurant in November 2017. The result has been a big success: delicious healthy and authentic New Orleans flavour only fuelled by plants. It is also an environment where the owners encourage healthy eating and entrepreneurship with a message that “you can create stuff for yourself and others.” 

“We want our people to wake up. The Black community is plagued by disease. It’s the food that is giving us these issues. It’s not always genetics. While our food is beautiful, it’s hurting us. It’s time to cut some of that stuff out,” says Joseph.

The barbers are being guided by what they like and want to eat most days and all still consider themselves “stage one vegans.” They are still transitioning and learning themselves. They hope to inspire more people to change their lifestyles by showing that vegan food can taste great, Vegan Wit a Twist makes sure that its dishes are packed with the famous traditional New Orleans flavours and seasonings especially their speciality sauces. This really is an example of vegan activism through the stomach!

The three barbers can be found promoting Vegan Wit A Twist on Instagram.

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Nicholas Orosz

Nicholas is a former City solicitor and Cambridge graduate. He has a long-standing interest in health & nutrition, the environmental movement, green politics & digital publishing. He has always loved crafting words. His transition to a vegan perspective has been gradual and an ongoing process of self-discovery. Contact: nicholas@vegansbethechange.com

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