Lots of folks think there are way too many World Heritage Sites. So, UNESCO has added a new category that’s not a place. It’s called “intangible heritage” and Italian Senators are pushing for the inclusion of The Mediterranean Diet into this category.
“The Mediterranean diet is a heritage that should be protected and shared,” said the presenter of the motion, ex-farm minister Paolo De Castro. ~ Med diet bids for heritage spot
Yes, I so agree. But I’m not optimistic.
Food, make that “good food,” comes from the soul. Industrial crap food doesn’t. Spending lots of government money applying and nurturing a proposal, even if it becomes something, is unlikely to change the flow of nutrition toward cheap, easily obtained, mass-produced, sugar and salt loaded industrial food as wages head ever lower.
You can declare Ravenna a World Heritage Site and have a reasonable chance of keeping the Bulldozers away from buildings containing ancient mosaics—but what do you do to keep alive a notion of good, healthy, natural food?
Remember that the answer has to take into account the work to prepare, shop, and remember traditions and recipes. You wanna know how Italians have done it over the years? Mom did it, or maybe grandma. If she wasn’t living with you, she brought stuff over. If she was living with you, she sat in the corner and nibbled bread dipped in a little sauce while the family ate a three course meal with homemade pasta.
Good luck preserving that.
It’s not like you can legislate grandmas to cook while the family wolfs down real food, to keep them off fried Mars Bars and Coca-Cola for supper.
“This is your intangible heritage I set before you. Take and eat!”
On the other hand, I’m hoping that ever increasing fuel prices will make the onslaught of Industrial food begin to collapse. There’s only profit in crap if the company producing it can get it to you cheap. Otherwise, that great stuff growing in the back yard beats it all to hell in every way.