Japan To Ask UNESCO To List Its Cuisine As An "Intangible Cultural Heritage of Humanity"

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Edwin Goei

A year after the nuclear disaster at Fukushima, Japan will submit to have UNESCO recognize its cuisine as an "Intangible Cultural Heritage of Humanity". The country will argue that "Washoku: Traditional dietary cultures of the Japanese," a seasons-based cuisine based on rice, fish and vegetables, deserves to be on list that includes traditional Mexican cuisine (as we reported here in 2010), the gastronomic meal of the French, the Mediterranean diet, and gingerbread craft from Northern Croatia.

The government has said that the county "needs to restore confidence in Japanese food, which has been adversely affected by rumours due to the nuclear accident" and hopes that the UNESCO designation would help.

The application will be filed with UNESCO by the end of the month, but the ultimate decision won't be known until late 2013.

If the organization accepts Japan's bid, you'll see a video just like the ones below at UNESCO's Intangible Heritage List.

Traditional Mexican cuisine

The gastronomic meal of the French

Gingerbread craft from Northern Croatia

The Mediterranean diet

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Does this mean that they'll use the UNESCO designation to continue to hunt Whales so that I may be treated to many more seasons of Whale wars? 

I love that show because it has me conflicted... Who to support... the silly little underdog hippies who throw rotten butter and paint filled balloons or the stoic Japanese whale hunters... out to slaughter endangered animals in the name of research...Errr... Dinner. 

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