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Belgium wants Beer Drinking and Brewing to be considered a Cultural Activity by UNESCO

UNESCO will meet next week in Addis Ababa to determine if beer culture will be among the 36 other practices the body recognises

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FILE - A jury member fills an evaluation sheet during the Brussels Beer Challenge in Brussels, Belgium, Nov. 4, 2016. credit- VOA
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Belgium, Nov 26, 2016: Belgium wants beer drinking and brewing to be considered a cultural activity worth protecting.

The tiny country is home to a massive beer industry, with almost 200 breweries and thousands of beers, according to a Belgian brewing association that is petitioning UNESCO. The U.N. organization already lists Spanish Flamenco and Indian yoga as cultural activities worthy of protection.

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“I think what is special to the Belgian beer culture is the combination of variety, innovation and tradition,” said Jean-Louis Van de Perre, the president of the Belgian Brewers’ Federation in an interview with Reuters. “We have more than 3,000 beers in Belgium, more than 200 breweries and also these breweries have created around them a beer culture. We have our pubs (bars), we have our museums, we have feasts, we have the ritual of how to serve beer.”

Those pushing for beer culture to be recognized by UNESCO also say beer has given the country with three official languages a sense of national identity. They added beer helps the economy.

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UNESCO will meet next week in Addis Ababa to determine if beer culture will be among the 36 other practices the body recognises.

Ordinary Belgians appear behind the push to recognize beer and brewing.

“I think it’s a nice recognition for the country,” said Gregoire Lepoudre, a Belgian lawyer told Reuters as he enjoyed a beer at a local cafe. “Every Belgian knows that Belgian beer is recognized around the world.”

Beer would not be the first Belgian cultural activity recognized by UNESCO, which also recognizes the country’s horse-drawn shrimp fishing and the Carnival celebration in the town of Aalst.

The UNESCO list of cultural heritage was started in 2008. To be considered, the activity must have been passed down over generations and provide those involved with a unique identity.(VOA)

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Galapagos, Ecuador Celebrates 40 Years As A World Heritage Site

Popularly known as Enchanted Islands, they are located on the equatorial line crossing the north of Isabela Island.

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Galapagos Islands celebrate 40 years of World Heritage Site status. Flickr

The Ecuadorian Galapagos Islands celebrated 40 years of the declaration of the archipelago as a World Heritage Site by UNESCO.

Ecuador President Lenin Moreno, tweeted on Saturday: “We celebrate one more anniversary of the declaration of Galapagos as the World Heritage Site. Let’s preserve and protect the Enchanted Islands, Ecuador’s legacy to the future of humanity.”

 

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Galapagos has flora and faun only unique to it. Flickr

 

In 1978, this title was awarded to the archipelago for its collection of flora and fauna unique in the world, a large part of whose species are endemic, which led to the islands management by a special regime that safeguards its conservation.

 

The archipelago is located in the Pacific Ocean at 972 km from the Ecuadorian coastline and has tourism as its main source of income with around 200,000 visitors a year.

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Galapagos has tourism as its main source of income with around 200,000 visitors a year. Flickr

The islands are home to species including sea turtles, dolphins, sharks, whales, coral reefs, frigatebirds, iguanas, lizards, cormorants, albatrosses, sea lions and penguins.

Also Read: 10 Indian Sites That Got UNESCO World Heritage Tag

Popularly known as Enchanted Islands, they are located on the equatorial line crossing the north of Isabela Island, the site of numerous earthquakes due to the tectonic plates nearby and is the second most active volcanic archipelago on the planet, after Hawaii. (IANS)