Iloilo Earns UNESCO Creative City of Gastronomy Designation
Iloilo City has been officially recognized by the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO) as a Creative City of Gastronomy. Town is the primary within the Philippines to receive this designation, joining a network of 350 cities in over 100 countries committed to promoting sustainable urban development through creative industries.
The UNESCO Creative Cities Network (UCCN) goals to foster international cooperation amongst cities which have identified creativity as a strategic factor for sustainable urban development. Iloilo City’s designation as a Creative City of Gastronomy recognizes its unique culinary identity and its commitment to promoting local food culture and traditions. Town’s wealthy history and diverse cultural influences have contributed to a vibrant food scene that showcases the perfect of Western Visayas cuisine.
Iloilo City’s recognition as a Creative City of Gastronomy is a testament to its efforts to advertise and preserve its culinary heritage. The designation is anticipated to spice up tourism and economic development in the town, in addition to provide opportunities for cultural exchange and collaboration with other cities within the UCCN. As a Creative City of Gastronomy, Iloilo City is poised to grow to be a hub for culinary innovation and creativity within the Philippines and beyond.
Iloilo City: The UNESCO Creative City of Gastronomy
The announcement was made on October 31, 2023, coinciding with the observance of World Cities Day. This recognition is a testament to the town’s wealthy culinary heritage and unique gastronomic experience.
The UNESCO Creative Cities Network (UCCN) is a world network of cities which were recognized for his or her contribution to the fields of crafts and folk art, design, film, gastronomy, literature, music, and media arts. The UCCN goals to advertise cooperation amongst cities which have identified creativity as a strategic factor for sustainable urban development.
Iloilo City’s designation as a UNESCO Creative City of Gastronomy is a results of its wealthy culinary heritage, which is a mix of indigenous, Spanish, Chinese, and American influences. Town’s cuisine is understood for its unique flavors, ingredients, and cooking techniques. Ilonggo cuisine is characterised by its use of fresh seafood, meats, and vegetables, in addition to its distinct sauces and condiments.
The popularity of Iloilo City as a UNESCO Creative City of Gastronomy is anticipated to spice up the town’s tourism industry and promote its cuisine to a world audience. This designation may also provide opportunities for the town to collaborate with other cities within the UCCN and share best practices in the sector of gastronomy.
The Significance of the Title
The title of UNESCO Creative City of Gastronomy is a major achievement for Iloilo City. It recognizes the town’s wealthy cultural heritage and its contribution to the creative fields of gastronomy and food culture. The title places Iloilo City among the many ranks of other notable gastronomic cities equivalent to Chengdu in China, Parma in Italy, and Ensenada in Mexico.
The popularity also highlights the importance of creativity and innovation in preserving cultural heritage. Iloilo City’s wealthy culinary traditions and unique food culture are a testament to its cultural heritage. The title recognizes the town’s efforts to preserve and promote its culinary traditions and to create a vibrant food culture that celebrates its heritage.
The UNESCO Creative City of Gastronomy title also has practical implications for Iloilo City. It will probably boost tourism and economic development by attracting food enthusiasts and gastronomic travelers from world wide. It will probably also create opportunities for local businesses and entrepreneurs to showcase their culinary creations and promote their products to a world audience.
Furthermore, the title can encourage creativity and innovation within the local food industry. It will probably encourage chefs, restaurateurs, and food entrepreneurs to experiment with recent flavors, techniques, and ingredients while staying true to the town’s culinary traditions and heritage. It will probably also foster collaborations and partnerships amongst local food businesses, artists, and cultural institutions to create a vibrant and dynamic food culture.
The Creative Cities Network
The Creative Cities Network is an initiative launched by UNESCO in 2004 to advertise cooperation and cultural exchange amongst cities which have identified creativity as a strategic factor for sustainable urban development. The network brings together cities from everywhere in the world which might be committed to sharing experiences, best practices, and knowledge to foster creativity and innovation in various fields, including music, literature, film, crafts and folk art, design, media arts, and gastronomy.
Understanding the Network
The Creative Cities Network relies on the concept cities can learn from one another and collaborate to realize common goals. The network provides a platform for cities to exchange ideas and experiences, develop joint projects, and promote cultural diversity and sustainable development. The network can also be a recognition of the role that cities play in shaping cultural and inventive industries, and as drivers of economic growth and social cohesion.
Cities which might be a part of the Creative Cities Network are chosen based on a rigorous evaluation process that takes under consideration their cultural assets, their commitment to creativity and innovation, and their potential to contribute to the network’s objectives. The choice process is carried out by an independent panel of experts within the relevant fields, and the ultimate decision is made by the Director-General of UNESCO, currently Audrey Azoulay.
List of Cities in UNESCO Creative Cities of Gastronomy
Iloilo City’s recent inclusion within the Creative Cities Network as a City of Gastronomy makes it the primary city within the Philippines to affix the network. Iloilo City joins a various group of cities from world wide which were recognized for his or her contributions to creativity and innovation. A few of the other cities within the network include:
- Afyonkarahisar, Turkey (2019)
- Alba, Italy (2017)
- Arequipa, Peru (2019)
- Belém, Brazil (2015)
- Belo Horizonte, Brazil (2019)
- Bendigo, Australia (2019)
- Bergamo, Italy (2019)
- Bergen, Norway (2015)
- Buenaventura, Colombia (2015)
- Burgos, Spain (2015)
- Chengdu, China (2010)
- Panama City, Panama (2017)
- Cochabamba, Bolivia (2017)
- Dénia, Spain (2015)
- Ensenada, Mexico (2015)
- Florianópolis, Brazil (2014)
- Gaziantep, Turkey (2015)
- Hatay, Turkey (2017)
- Hyderabad, India (2019)
- Iloilo City, Philippines (2023)
- Jeonju, South Korea (2012)
- Macao, China (2017)
- Mérida, Mexico (2019)
- Östersund, Sweden (2010)
- Overstrand Hermanus, South Africa (2019)
- Paraty, Brazil (2017)
- Parma, Italy (2015)
- Phuket, Thailand (2015)
- Popayan, Colombia (2005)
- Portoviejo, Ecuador (2019)
- Rasht, Iran (2015)
- San Antonio, Texas, United States of America (2017)
- Shunde, China (2014)
- Tsuruoka, Japan (2014)
- Tucson, Arizona, United States of America (2015)
- Yangzhou, China (2019)
- Zahlé, Lebanon (2013)
Each of those cities has its own unique cultural identity and inventive industries, they usually all share a commitment to promoting creativity and innovation of their communities. The network provides a platform for these cities to collaborate and share their experiences, and to learn from one another’s successes and challenges.
The Creative Cities Network is a very important initiative in the sector of urban planning and development, and it highlights the role that culture and creativity can play in constructing sustainable and vibrant cities. The network also provides a chance for cities to have a good time their cultural heritage and to showcase their creative industries on a world stage. World Cities Day, observed on October 31 every 12 months, is a reminder of the importance of cities in shaping our world, and the Creative Cities Network is a testament to the ability of cities to shape our cultural and inventive future.
Contribution of the Ilonggo People
Ilonggo’s are pleased with their Culinary Heritage, and any visitor can attest to that. The Ilonggo chefs, stakeholders, and native government are working closely to advertise their cuisine not only to fellow Filipinos but to the remainder of the World.
On October 14, 2022, Chef Rafael “Tibong” Javier Jardeleza Jr., in partnership with the Iloilo City government, launched a coffee table book titled Flavors of Iloilo.
Chef Tibong is a passionate advocate for Ilonggo heritage cooking, and his dedication to promoting the region’s cuisine has been demonstrated by the success of the tenth annual Tabu-an Western Visayas Ilonggo Heritage Cuisine Cooking Competition.
In partnership with SM Iloilo, the Tabu-an cooking competition strives to have a good time local recipes and ingredients while discovering recent talents within the culinary world. The recent installment of this competition has been a powerful success, and it is obvious that Ilonggos take great pride in sharing their traditional culinary heritage.
Iloilo City’s Culinary Heritage
Iloilo City’s recognition as a UNESCO Creative City of Gastronomy is a testament to its wealthy culinary heritage. Town boasts a novel mix of Spanish, Chinese, and Malay influences, making its cuisine a melting pot of flavors and textures.
Traditional Ilonggo Cuisine
At the center of Iloilo’s gastronomy is its traditional Ilonggo cuisine. Town is understood for its iconic dishes, equivalent to La Paz Batchoy and Pancit Molo. La Paz Batchoy is a noodle soup made with pork organs, crushed pork cracklings, and egg noodles, while Pancit Molo is a dumpling soup crammed with ground pork and shrimp. These are called Ilonggo heirloom dishes, passed down from generation to generation.
One other notable aspect of Ilonggo cuisine is “timplada,” the art of Ilonggo cuisine. Timplada refers back to the unique mix of spices and herbs utilized in Ilonggo dishes, leading to a definite flavor profile that sets it aside from other Philippine cuisines.
Culinary Events and Projects
Iloilo City’s recognition as a UNESCO Creative City of Gastronomy has also led to numerous culinary events and projects. In 2021, the town hosted the Ark of Taste Talk, a forum that discussed the preservation of local food culture. The event highlighted the importance of preserving traditional Ilonggo dishes and ingredients, equivalent to the native black rice and the Ilonggo version of the adobo.
In 2022, Iloilo City also hosted the Food and Tourism for Rural Development in Western Visayas and Pangyam-is Talk, which focused on promoting sustainable tourism and rural development through food. The Western Visayas Sugar Trail, a project to advertise the region’s wealthy sugar heritage, was also launched in Iloilo City.
Furthermore, the town has also been a venue for various culinary competitions and events, equivalent to the Philippine Cookbook Photoshoot, the World Food Expo, and the Chefs’ Food Trip Project. The Tabu-an Cooking Competition, which showcases the town’s traditional dishes, can also be a must-see event for food enthusiasts.
Regularly Asked Questions
What’s the importance of Iloilo being named a UNESCO Creative City of Gastronomy?
Iloilo being named a UNESCO Creative City of Gastronomy is important since it recognizes the town’s wealthy culinary heritage and its efforts to preserve and promote its traditional cuisine. This designation also helps to boost awareness and appreciation for Iloilo’s unique food culture, which may boost tourism and economic development within the region.
Moreover, being a part of the UNESCO Creative Cities Network provides opportunities for Iloilo to collaborate with other cities world wide and share best practices in preserving and promoting cultural heritage.
What are a number of the unique dishes and culinary traditions of Iloilo?
Iloilo is understood for its wealthy culinary traditions and unique dishes that reflect the town’s history and culture. A few of the popular dishes in Iloilo include La Paz Batchoy, Pancit Molo, Kadyos Baboy Langka, and Chicken Inasal. Town also has a vibrant street food scene, with vendors selling various snacks like binakol, puto, and kakanin.
What steps did Iloilo take to grow to be a UNESCO Creative City of Gastronomy?
Iloilo took various steps to grow to be a UNESCO Creative City of Gastronomy, including the promotion of its local food culture, collaborations with stakeholders, and the event of sustainable food systems. Town also organized various food festivals and events to showcase its culinary heritage and attract tourists.
How will being a UNESCO Creative City of Gastronomy profit Iloilo and its residents?
Being a UNESCO Creative City of Gastronomy will profit Iloilo and its residents in several ways. It would boost the town’s tourism industry, create more job opportunities, and promote the preservation of its culinary heritage. The designation may also provide a platform for Iloilo to collaborate with other Creative Cities and share best practices in promoting sustainable development through food culture.
What other cities within the Philippines have been named UNESCO Creative Cities?
Other than Iloilo, other cities within the Philippines which were named UNESCO Creative Cities are Baguio (Crafts and Folk Art), Cebu City (Design), and Davao City (Music).
What criteria does UNESCO use to find out which cities are designated as Creative Cities?
UNESCO uses various criteria to find out which cities are designated as Creative Cities, including the town’s contribution to the sector, the standard of its creative industries, and its commitment to promoting sustainable development through creativity and innovation. The choice process also considers the town’s potential to create social, economic, and cultural advantages for its residents and stakeholders.
Iloilo Travel and Tour Packages
Try our complete list of beneficial Hotels and Resorts in Iloilo City, Philippines, via Agoda, or you might also see available Airbnb properties in the town.