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Cathay Y. N. Smith

The culinary industry has traditionally operated in a low-intellectual-property environment. This is the case not only because there are limited intellectual property protections available to chefs, but also because chefs have long adhered to and understood the culture of sharing and hospitality in the cuisine industry. This attitude, however, may be changing. In light of the recent U.S. Supreme Court decision, Star Athletica, L.L.C. v. Varsity Brands, Inc., one of the biggest hurdles to copyright protection of culinary presentations – the useful article exclusion – may not be as big of a hurdle as it has been in the past. This chapter takes a fresh look at culinary presentations and copyright law, and explores each element of copyrightability – originality, work of authorship, fixation, and useful article separability – to detail how copyright law treats culinary presentations.