China is known for its rich and diverse gastronomy. It is widely popular around the globe with different restaurants and food chains trying to replicate the flavors of Chinese cuisine. The Asian country is, with some other neighboring nations, a place for hot noodles, abundant rice, and steamed vegetables.
Considering the previous reasons, it is no surprise that a new trend has taken over social media in China, and subsequently the rest of the world. The new viral discussion talks about what many Asians (especially Chinese) consider to be “bland foods,” which are commonly prepared and eaten by Westerners.
Among the funny pictures, memes, and posts pertaining to the trend, users can see the so-called “bland” or “white” foods including simple two-ingredient sandwiches, dressing-free salads, raw vegetables, slices of cheese with bread, and others. The hashtag to describe this simple cooking form has been named “#bareinfan,” which translates to “#Whitepeoplemeals.”
The ongoing trend gained traction in May, as Twitter users began to post pictures and videos of the simple and quick meals they found across social media in China. In addition, others took the occasion to share the “culture shock” they experienced when visiting the West. Some commented on the fact that they could never consider these bland foods an actual meal, while Westerners are very likely to have them as lunch. One commentator affirmed:
“My Australian colleagues have expressed the ‘don’t-give-a-s**t’ spirit of white people meals to the extreme. It was a slice of bread last time. Now there are two carrots. The only ceremonial effort was putting them in a lunchbox.”
The trend has also reached “white” audiences, who have mostly responded with jokes and kind words, as they were able to see the differences between the meals each culture has on a daily basis. Most users expressed that, even though these meals could help them lose weight, they are not actually part of a completely balanced diet.
I found out today that on Chinese social media, there’s a trending hashtag that translates to white people meals lol
“I was so tired I ate a white people meal today”
One of hashtags is also “white people meals are still meals” pic.twitter.com/VGdedgrV2F
— Yan Fan 📍Tokyo – we’re hiring! (@yanarchy) June 2, 2023