The Mediterranean diet, part of Unesco's intangible cultural heritage of humanity
Question for written answer E-010814-14
to the Commission
Massimo Paolucci (S&D)
On 17 November 2013 Unesco included the Mediterranean diet in its intangible cultural heritage of humanity list.
The term ‘diet’ encompasses the set of customs, skills, expertise and knowledge synthesised over the centuries by the Mediterranean peoples, in particular in Cyprus, Croatia, Spain, Greece, Italy, Morocco and Portugal, into a nutritional model based on the cultural environment, landscape, crops, preservation, processing, preparation and in particular consumption of food. This model, consisting primarily of olive oil, cereals, fresh and dried fruit, vegetables, a moderate quantity of fish, meat and dairy produce, a variety of condiments and spices, all washed down with wine or teas, has remained constant in time and space.
A cultural expression or practice is included in the intangible cultural heritage of humanity list either due to an urgent need to preserve it or due to its representative status.
In view of the (scientifically recognised) positive effects of the Mediterranean diet on levels of cholesterol in the blood and certain cardiovascular pathologies, what initiatives, legislative or otherwise, does the Commission intend to take to protect that heritage?
Does the Commission intend to launch a research project dedicated to the formulation of a ‘rulebook’ on the Mediterranean diet?