New Series Introduces Inspiring People and Organizations
Taking on Broken Food Systems and Making a Difference in their Communities through Food
Free LA Times Food Bowl Community Event Will Engage Audiences in a Social Justice Conversation
Los Angeles, Calif. – April 3, 2019 – KCET, a producer of award-winning and diverse original content for public media, and Tastemade, a global media company creating premium video programming in the food, travel and home verticals, announced today the premiere details of the new multi-media series BROKEN BREAD, hosted by restaurant entrepreneur, social activist and acclaimed chef Roy Choi. In the show, Choi explores complex social justice issues and meets inspiring individuals and organizations who use food as a platform for activism as well as a catalyst for change. The series broadcast premiere is Wed., May 15 at 8:30 p.m. on PBS channel KCET in Southern California and on Tastemade TV now available on major streaming platforms. The series will subsequently air May 20 on PBS SoCal at 7:30 p.m. and May 21 on Link TV via DirecTV (channel 375) / Dish Network (channel 9410) at 9:30 pm ET/PT. Episodes will also be available on brokenbread.tv as well as the free PBS App.
Co-produced by KCET and Tastemade, each half-hour episode profiles individuals and organizations who make a difference in their communities through food. Known for his home-grown approach to conscious cooking and community-building, Chef Choi uncovers innovative culinary and agricultural practices that transform food access, food justice and community. The series explores neighborhoods across Los Angeles, telling the stories of the trailblazers in the social conscious food movement including Father Greg Boyle (Homeboy Industries), Robert Egger (LA Kitchen), Olympia Auset (Suprmarkt), Mar Diego (Dough Girl) and more.
In each episode, Roy undergoes a journey of discovery that challenges the status quo—and his own assumptions—about the problems facing our food system. While the journeys are deeply personal and informed by Roy’s own experiences, BROKEN BREAD explores some of the most pressing issues facing the food industry and our society: food deserts, food waste, immigration, sustainability, among others.
Visit Brokenbread.tv to learn about the organizations and the issues through articles, resource guides, and recipes. Viewers can take a deeper dive into the social justice issues explored in the series, and ways in which they can become activated to advance change.
A FREE community screening event in partnership with Live Nation will be held at the historic Los Angeles landmark, The Wiltern, as part of the Los Angeles Times Food Bowl on Sun., May 5 from 5:30-8:30 pm. At the event’s opening reception, Roy Choi will be joined by community organizations and individuals from the series where they will host an interactive exploration of the power of food. Guests will be treated to BROKEN BREAD’s premiere episode followed by a panel moderated by Choi himself and featuring the heroes highlighted in the series. For more information about attending the event, visit www.universe.com/
BROKEN BREAD episodes are slated to air as follows (subject to change):
“Transformation” premieres on KCET & Tastemade and is available for streaming May 15
Roy explores the power of cooking to rehabilitate those on the margins of society and the organizations taking a chance on those who need it most. He spends time with Father Greg Boyle of Homeboy and Homegirl Industries, the pioneer of socially minded food enterprises focused on transitioning former gang members from lives on the street to lives in kitchens. Roy also visits Mar Diego, a former drug dealer-turned-food entrepreneur who has opened Dough Girl, a pizza shop in the San Fernando Valley employing local kids struggling with drug use and homelessness. Additionally, the episode features L.A. Mayor Eric Garcetti shedding light into workforce models with a purpose.
“Access” premieres on KCET & Tastemade and is available for streaming May 22
Roy meets the individuals bringing healthy and affordable food options into South L.A. communities that lack access to fresh food. Roy also visits with vegan grocer Olympia Auset, whose startup Süprmarkt delivers healthy and affordable food to the doorsteps of her community. Finally, Roy visits Earle’s Hot Dogs, a vegetarian hot dog cart that has grown over its 30-year history into a multi-location brick and mortar shop, now a staple of a community hungry for healthier options.
“Future” premieres on KCET & Tastemade and is available for streaming May 29
Roy explores future culinary landscapes looking forward to a world affected by climate change. He spends an evening with chefs Henry Fischer and Anna Rose Hopkins from Hank and Bean who make a surprising plant-forward dinner featuring non-traditional protein sources like crickets and jellyfish. Roy also visits with Ethan Brown of Beyond Meat, a company pioneering the plant-based replacements for our favorite burgers and sausages, and Vegan Hooligans, a pop-up restaurant in eastside LA’s Eagle Rock making classic American diner food out of entirely plant-based ingredients.
“Cannabis” premieres on KCET & Tastemade and is available for streaming June 5
Roy visits Chris Yang’s Pop Cultivate to explore the emergence of a new culinary landscape since the advent of legalized recreational marijuana. He then tackles the gentrification of cannabis culture by visiting Med Men, the leader in upscale legal weed retailers in Los Angeles. An interview with Virgil Grant, a formerly incarcerated weed dealer now seeking to run a legal distribution business, sheds light on efforts to build cannabis equity for those hit hardest by the War on Drugs. The episode also features interviews with actor/activist Cheech Marin and Shep Gordon.
“Waste” premieres on KCET & Tastemade and is available for streaming June 12
Roy journeys from L.A. to Orange County to discover how two non-profit innovators are tackling the problem of food waste. He then visits Robert Egger, whose project LA Kitchen is simultaneously aggregating wasted food, using it to cook fresh meals for those in need, and providing workforce training. Roy also visits Bill Bracken of Bracken’s Kitchen who partners with Chefs to End Hunger to reuse leftover food and distribute it with his food truck in Orange County. Roy also visits with Richard Garcia at Alma Backyard Farms in Compton where kids are learning how food in grown by digging in to Alma’s hands-on program.
“WATTS” premieres on KCET & Tastemade and is available for streaming June 19
Roy takes a head-on look at efforts to heal the social and economic wounds of Watts, acknowledging one of the oldest communities in Los Angeles as a mirror into ourselves and our future. Led by activist Aqeela Sherrills, Roy visits with Sherrills’ mother as she prepares free food for the community, digs into the soul of what makes Watts Coffee House a cornerstone in the neighborhood and examines the missed opportunities of the Jordan Downs Housing Project redevelopment. Sharing the “real” story of his own restaurant Locol and where it stands within the community of Watts, Roy reflects as he connects with the very people navigating the most pressing issues facing our food systems.
Executive Producers are Roy Choi, KCET’s Juan Devis and Tastemade’s Co-founder and CEO Larry Fitzgibbon. Producers are Natasha Phan, Choi’s business partner, KCET’s Matthew Crotty and Tastemade’s Emily Mraz and Elizabeth Collins. BROKEN BREAD is directed by James Mann.
ABOUT ROY CHOI
In 2008, Roy Choi and a crew of friends and family started what would be the beginning of the intersection between food, technology, culture, entrepreneurship and long lines. That comet was called Kogi BBQ and it made a splash on the streets of LA, being the first to use Twitter and ushering in a whole new generation of eaters and followers to what would be called America’s first viral restaurant by Newsweek. Roy was named Food & Wine’s Best New Chef 2010, one of TIME’s 100 Most Influential People in the World 2016, LA Times Restaurant of the Year 2017 and has an award-winning New York Times Best Seller called L.A. Son: My Life, My City, My Food. He resides in Los Angeles, California where he oversees Kogi BBQ, Chego, A-Frame, Alibi Room, Locol and his first restaurant outside California called Best Friend at Park MGM, Las Vegas. Roy is also co-producer on the movie Chef as well as executive producer and host of the socially conscious show Broken Bread on KCET and Tastemade. He is a highly recognized speaker at events and panels worldwide.
Choi is represented by Andrew Chason at CAA and Lisa Shotland at Shotlandia as well as Sylvia Desrochers and Big Time PR.
On-air, online and in the community, KCET plays a vital role in the cultural and educational enrichment of Southern and Central California. KCET offers a wide range of award-winning local programming as well as the finest public television programs from around the world. Throughout its 54-year history, KCET has won hundreds of major awards for its local and regional news and public affairs programming, its national drama and documentary productions, its quality educational family and children’s programs, its outreach and community services and its website, kcet.org. KCET is a donor-supported community institution. For additional information about KCET productions, web-exclusive content, programming schedules and community events, please visit kcet.org. Select original programming from KCET is also available for streaming on Apple TV, YouTube, Amazon and Roku platforms. For more information please visit http://www.kcet.org/apps. KCET is a content channel of the Public Media Group of Southern California.
Tastemade is a modern media brand inspiring the taste of a generation through entertainment, commerce and experiences. The company creates award-winning video programming in Food, Home and Travel, which appears on all major digital, mobile, streaming OTT and linear TV platforms. The company reaches a global audience of over 250 million monthly viewers, streaming 2.5 billion views, and has built an engaged, passionate, global community. Tastemade has won a host of awards for its storytelling, including two James Beard Awards. For more information, visit Tastemade at: www.tastemade.com.