Electronic Journal of Polish Agricultural Universities (EJPAU) founded by all Polish Agriculture Universities presents original papers and review articles relevant to all aspects of agricultural sciences. It is target for persons working both in science and industry,regulatory agencies or teaching in agricultural sector. Covered by IFIS Publishing (Food Science and Technology Abstracts), ELSEVIER Science - Food Science and Technology Program, CAS USA (Chemical Abstracts), CABI Publishing UK and ALPSP (Association of Learned and Professional Society Publisher - full membership). Presented in the Master List of Thomson ISI.
Volume 13
Issue 2
Food Science and Technology
Available Online: http://www.ejpau.media.pl/volume13/issue2/abs-12.html


Jerzy Borowski
Department of Human Nutrition, University of Warmia and Mazury in Olsztyn, Poland



The word "traditional" is not properly defined and, for this reason (consciously or not) it is used rather incorrectly. The history of food and feeding started when human beings first appeared in this world and ate to survive. In the beginning, humans led nomadic lives and later they grew new plant species and became animal hunters and breeders.

Eating habits cannot be separated from culture, religion, morality or medicine. The first humans fed like vultures. The meat they ate was not matured. As time went by, they started to look for ways of making it taste better. At the same time, food became a factor which brought social distinction to human communities.

The European culinary art started by adopting Muslim eating habits. The Renaissance saw the rejection of the Arabic influence and new importance was given to dairy products, vegetables and mushrooms. The bourgeoisie started to adopt foods eaten by the nobility.

Traditional food is a guide to our culture. In the early 1990s, the Protected Designation of Origin (PDO), Protected Geographical Indication (PGI) and certificates of specific character systems were introduce in Europe. These regulations sought to provide a simple system of protection.

Creating a List of Traditional Products in Poland in 2004 aimed at granting distinction to products with unique quality, which they owed to old recipes and traditional production methods. As of 8 March 2010, 722 products had been granted distinction.

An analysis of the market of traditional food in Poland highlights the strong and weak points of actions which aim at cultivating the tradition. The strong points include the possibility of protecting the names and brands of products, the development of rural areas and increasing the touristic attractiveness of regions. Threats and barriers should be seen in the lack of clearly
defined state policy, including the relevant legal, administrative and economic regulations.

Key words: traditional food, historical and cultural factors, heritage protection.

Jerzy Borowski
Department of Human Nutrition,
University of Warmia and Mazury in Olsztyn, Poland
Plac Cieszynski 1, 10-726 Olsztyn, Poland
phone: (+48 89) 523 37 60
email: jerzy.borowski@uwm.edu.pl

Responses to this article, comments are invited and should be submitted within three months of the publication of the article. If accepted for publication, they will be published in the chapter headed 'Discussions' and hyperlinked to the article.