Traditional foods at IP in Romania (3)

At the IP in Romania (see two earlier blogs) students study various aspects related to traditional foods, from discussions over micro-organisms and hygiene rules to marketing and rural development. The category ‘traditional’ is a social construction, what is considered traditional changes with time and cultural context. Tradition is influenced by new techniques and innovations; which one is allowed and which one is not? But also by current food cultures and the customer base to which traditional foods appeal. Traditional foods often carry one or more labels to protect these products against imitation. This is necessary as customers are usually cultural outsiders, urban consumers, tourists or consumers in other countries. Without a cultural reference point, they can’t judge on their own whether the product is traditionally produced and thus as authentic as claimed. Continue reading