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A definitive list of woke and non-woke foods

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In announcing changes to the school lunches programme, David Seymour said kids would no longer be served ‘woke’ foods. Image / Tina Tiller

In announcing changes to the school lunches programme, David Seymour said kids would no longer be served ‘woke’ foods. To clear up any confusion, The Spinoff has compiled a guide to the wokeness levels of some common food items.

Originally published by The Spinoff

Apple = NOT WOKE

Avocado = WOKE

Avocado, smashed = EVEN WOKER

Banana = NOT WOKE

Beans, baked = NOT WOKE

Beans, non-baked = WOKE

Burger = NOT WOKE

Cheese, colby, edam, mild, tasty = NOT WOKE

Cheese, other = WOKE

Cheese roll = NOT WOKE

Chickpeas = WOKE

Chips, hot = NOT WOKE

Chips, packet (ready salted, salt and vinegar or chicken flavour) = NOT WOKE

Chips, packet (all other flavours) = WOKE

Chocolate, Whittaker’s Miraka Kirīmi = WOKE

Chocolate, other = NOT WOKE

Couscous = WOKE

Crackers, rice, “specialty”, seeded = WOKE

Crackers, Snax, Salada, Meal Mates = NOT WOKE

Curry = WOKE

Doughnut, cream = NOT WOKE

Hot dog, battered = NOT WOKE

Hummus = WOKE

Jerky, beef = NOT WOKE

Jerky, plant-based beef = SURPRISINGLY NOT WOKE


Lentils = WOKE

Lettuce, iceberg = NOT WOKE

Lettuce, fancy, mesclun, cos = WOKE

Luncheon sausage = NOT WOKE


Meat wrapped in meat = EVEN MORE NOT WOKE

Milk, cow’s = NOT WOKE

Milk, soy, oat, almond etc = WOKE

Muffin = NOT WOKE

Nut butter, non-peanut = WOKE

Pasta, canned (spaghetti) = NOT WOKE

Pasta, real (spaghetti) = WOKE

Peanut butter, crunchy = WOKE

Peanut butter, smooth = NOT WOKE

Pesto, basil = WOKE

Pesto, basil, wrapped in at least two kinds of meat = NOT WOKE


Pizza, $3.99 from Pizza Hut = NOT WOKE

Pizza, spaghetti-topped = NOT WOKE

Pizza, other = WOKE

Bill English’s spaghetti-topped pizza (Photo: Bill English)
Bill English’s spaghetti-topped pizza (Photo: Bill English)

Quinoa, pronounced keen-wah = WOKE

Quinoa, pronounced kwin-oh-ah = WOKE but somehow less so

Sandwich, butter and mayo only, no other spreads = NOT WOKE

Salad, word (draft curriculum) = WOKE

Sausage, in white bread = NOT WOKE

Sausage roll = NOT WOKE

Scone, cheese = NOT WOKE

Shaved ham = NOT WOKE

Spice, all = WOKE

Sushi = WOKE

Toast, with non-woke spread = NOT WOKE

Toffee Pops = NOT WOKE

Tofu = WOKE

Wrap (woke sandwich alternative) = WOKE

Yoghurt, Greek = WOKE

To determine the wokeness level of any food not on the list, ask yourself the following:

  • was it available at a Mosgiel cafeteria circa 1981? or;
  • has it been photographed being snacked on by a finance minister ahead of presenting the budget?

If the answer is no to both of these questions, the food is woke.

Here is another simple formula to follow:

  • food from a non-English-speaking non-white culture = WOKE
  • food from a non-English-speaking white culture = SUSPICIOUS
  • food from an English-speaking white culture = NOT WOKE

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