France Proposes Baguettes As A Cultural World Heritage Site

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France wants to have its baguette placed on the list of cultural world heritage.

 

The Ministry of Culture in Paris will submit the request for recognition to the UN organization Unesco next week. A decision is expected next fall.

In France, an estimated 10 million baguettes are eaten every day. The ministry notes that the number of bakeries in the country is declining, especially in rural areas. In 1970 there were 55,000 artisan bakeries and now only 35,000. Industrial bread is also on the rise in France.

The baguette got its name officially in 1920. Then a law came into force that stipulates that a baguette must weigh at least 80 grams and have a maximum length of 40 centimetres.

The history of elongated, crusty bread dates back to the 17th century. In the 18th century, it was baked in more and more places, some say because of steam ovens’ introduction in the 1930s. A famous anecdote is that Emperor Napoleon decreed that bread should be made in stick form so that soldiers could easily take it with them.

This year, Unesco will decide, among other things, whether sauna culture in Finland, a lawn mowing competition in Bosnia and a Korean lantern festival will be included in the list of intangible heritage.

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