Baguettes deserve world heritage status, France says

Elias Hubbard
January 14, 2018

A cornerstone of French cuisine and a big part of everyday life, France consumes six billion baguettes each year and now President Emmanuel Macron has announced he feels that the baguette should be placed on UNESCO's list.

Speaking to bakers at the Elysee presidential palace in Paris, Macron said: "The baguette is envied around the world". "This excellence and this savoir faire must be preserved". "This is why it needs to be (classified) as heritage", he said.

In his interview with Europe 1, Macron linked this proposal to the successful UNESCO bid by Neapolitan pizza makers past year.

Dominique Anract, president of the National Condederation of French Patisseries and Bakeries, told food website Atabula: "When I see the quality of bread in supermarkets, it is impossible not to get angry".

Under French law, traditional baguettes can be made from just four ingredients: wheat flour, water, yeast and salt.

Other recent additions to the Representative List of the Intangible Cultural Heritage of Humanity include the Basel Carnival, Cuban Punto music and the Iranian horse riding game called Chogran.

Already on the list are yoga, spanish flamenco and Tibetan Opera as well as Belgian beer culture.

Mass-produced imitations don't deserve to be called baguettes, French bakers say. "It's not a matter of beliefs; everyone has it".

French food is already on UNESCO's list.

The UN cultural body's world heritage committee aims to protect traditions against the effects of globalisation and meets once a year to evaluate nominations.

"The gastronomic meal should respect a fixed structure, commencing with an apéritif (drinks before the meal) and ending with liqueurs, containing in between at least four successive courses, namely a starter, fish and/or meat with vegetables, cheese and dessert", the entry said.

Other reports by Click Lancashire

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