A BILL has been filed at the House of Representatives that seeks to preserve and develop the country’s culinary heritage through systematic mapping and documentation.

“The United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO) considers cultural mapping as a vital tool and technique in providing the society with an overall framework in the preservation of its cultural heritage,” reads part of House Bill 10551 filed by Antique Rep. Loren B. Legarda.

If passed into law, the departments on education, agriculture, and tourism would lead programs for documenting different food cultures, cooking techniques, and economic viability through the use of geographic tools.

It would also establish a Committee on Philippine Gastronomy and Culinary Heritage that will be led by the National Commission for Culture and the Arts (NCCA).

The new committee would be in charge of formulating policies to develop and promote Filipino cuisine.

The measure would also provide a P10-million budget from the national treasury for the initial implementation of the proposed law. Future allocations would be placed under the NCCA’s annual budget as a separate line item. — Russell Louis C. Ku