Pizza making is a cultural cornerstone of Italy.
Italy recently submitted the art of Neapolitan pizza making for inclusion in UNESCO’s cultural heritage list. The proposal, unanimously confirmed by Italy’s National Commission for UNESCO, was submitted along with a petition with more than 850,000 signatures from people all over the world.
From here, the proposal will go through a yearlong process involving all 193 UN member-states. Neapolitan pizza won’t be able to claim any formal titles until the final decisions are made in Paris in 2017.
Though the organization’s world heritage list mostly contains landmarks in need of preservation, UNESCO started a list a few years ago that includes “intangible cultural heritage.” The Italian commission’s argument for scoring a spot on the list? Neapolitan pizza is a critical element of Italian heritage and is something that should be protected from counterfeiters.
The application divulges the stringent standards of an authentic Neapolitan pizza, including the type of flour used to requisite crust thickness. If the pizza gets awarded the title, it will join other regional rituals like Georgian traditional Qvevri wine making and Sicilian puppet theatre.