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French baguettes should be Unesco-listed treasures — Macron

14 Enero 2018

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.

The French leader has seen an opportunity to have perhaps his country's most famous export added to list after Naples' world-renowned brand of pizza was recognised in December.

Although the traditional baguette has already been protected in France by law since 1993 by being on Unesco's list it will be protectected from globalisation.

He may be happy for the novel to have remained out of the public domain as he seeks to restore the dignity of the French presidency.

"Excellence and expertise must be preserved, and that is why it should be heritage-listed", President Macron told French radio.

"I know our bakers, they saw that the Neapolitans managed to have pizza (classified) as (part of) world heritage, so they said, 'Why not the baguette?' And they're right", he said.

Artisan breadmakers have voiced concern about mass-produced imitations.

Modern pizza originated in Naples and is famed for its twirling pizza dough, which is baked in a wood-fired brick oven.

"The baguette is part of the daily life of the French, in the morning, at midday and in the evening", he said. To meet the criteria, the bread must only be made from four ingredients: wheat flour, water, yeast and salt.

UNESCO, the UN cultural organization, has designated certain cultural foods or cuisines to its Intangible Cultural Heritage list.

What is already on the list?

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Not content with honouring sites like the Great Barrier Reef and Victoria Falls, the UN's cultural organisation also offers protection to "traditions or living expressions" based on their cultural impact and importance.

The traditional Japanese cuisine "washoku, "Belgian beer culture and the Korean way of making kimchi are just a few of the many foods and practices on the list".

France has already racked up multiple successful applications, from Alençon lace-making to French-style equitation. The claim surfaced in a biography of his wife Brigitte, 64, to be published next week.

French baguettes should be Unesco-listed treasures — Macron