October 24, 2013 12:31
The Korean traditions of making and sharing kimchi are set to make UNESCO's intangible cultural asset list in December.
The spicy dish as well as the preparation process ahead of winter, or "kimjang," has recently been recommended for the Representative List of Intangible Cultural Heritage of Humanity by a UNESCO committee, the Cultural Heritage Administration said Wednesday.
The committee said kimjang traditions have helped reaffirm Korean identity and strengthen unity among families and communities. Listing the traditions "could contribute to the visibility of intangible cultural heritage by enhancing dialogue among different communities nationally and internationally that practice foodways that similarly make creative use of natural resources," it added.
The final decision will be made at a full session of the committee in Baku, Azerbaijan on Dec. 2-7 but it has never so far rejected a recommendation at this stage.
Of a total of 31 submissions, 23 have been recommended for inclusion including Japan's Washoku traditional dietary cultures.
Food culture currently on the UNESCO list includes the gastronomic meal of the French; the Mediterranean diet of Greece, Italy, Morocco and Spain; traditional Mexican cuisine; and Turkey's ceremonial Keşkek tradition.
If Kimjang is included in the list, it will bring the total number of Korean intangible cultural assets on the list to 16.
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