MANILA -- The Department of Trade and Industry (DTI) clarified over the weekend that the move to develop standards for cooking adobo is only for international promotions.
This after the agency was criticized online for announcing the creation of a technical committee that will standardize Filipino dishes, starting with adobo.
In a statement, DTI made it clear that the proposed standards for adobo aim to help "develop more creative industry exports," not to create a "mandatory standard" for local households.
"There was a suggestion in the industry to have consultations among chefs and what will be a traditional recipe especially for international promotions (example your adobo won't become paksiw or humba). Again, this is to promote Filipino cuisines abroad," it said.
"Obviously, this is not a mandatory standard because there are thousands or millions of 'lutong adobo,'" it stressed. "The attempt is to define what we will promote internationally and not redefining what adobo is to different people now."
DTI went on to assure that it will continue to "encourage" the creativity of Filipinos when it comes to cooking adobo.
"To many Filipinos, the best adobo is the one 'cooked at home' or 'cooked by their parents or lola.' There is a lot of creativity going on and it must be encouraged."
DTI's Bureau of Philippine Standards has started developing a Philippine National Standard for adobo last May, with "Kulinarya: A Guidebook to Philippine Cuisine" serving as its main reference.
The technical committee is headed by Via Mare founder Glenda Barretto as chairperson, vice-chairpersons Myrna Segismundo of the Food Writers Association of the Philippines, and Raoul Roberto Goco from Hotel and Restaurant Association of the Philippines.
They are also joined by representatives from University of the Philippines Diliman-College of Home Economics, Philippine Chamber of Food Manufacturers Inc., Philippine Association of Meat Processors Inc., Department of Science and Technology-Industrial Technology Development Institute, Philippine Association of Food Technologists Inc., Le Toque Blanche Chefs Association, Asia Society Philippines, National Commission for Culture and the Arts, and Philippine Daily Inquirer.