About the Mediterranean Diet

Beyond the Ingredients

The Mediterranean Diet goes beyond a nutritional recommendation, having been inscribed by UNESCO in 2010 to the Representative List of the Intangible Cultural Heritages of Humanity. It is specifically acknowledged as a set of skills, knowledge, rituals, symbols, and traditions concerning crops, harvesting, fishing, animal husbandry, conservation, processing, cooking, and particularly the sharing and consumption of food,” not as a particular set of foods.

“Eating together is the foundation of the cultural identity and continuity of communities throughout the Mediterranean basin. It is a moment of social exchange and communication, an affirmation and renewal of family, group or community identity. The Mediterranean diet emphasizes values of hospitality, neighbourliness, intercultural dialogue and creativity, and a way of life guided by respect for diversity. It plays a vital role in cultural spaces, festivals and celebrations, bringing together people of all ages, conditions and social classes. It includes the craftsmanship and production of traditional receptacles for the transport, preservation and consumption of food, including ceramic plates and glasses. Women play an important role in transmitting knowledge of the Mediterranean diet: they safeguard its techniques, respect seasonal rhythms and festive events, and transmit the values of the element to new generations. Markets also play a key role as spaces for cultivating and transmitting the Mediterranean diet during the daily practice of exchange, agreement and mutual respect.”


Mediterraneity, is a set of universal values, capable of safeguarding this biological and cultural heritage and developing resilience for the future. A concept that incorporates knowledge, identity, and biodiversity in the Mediterranean way of life, highlighting the synergies that have been created through 2,500 years of co-evolution between the environment and society. In a fluid and dynamic balance that has overcome the erosion of time, bringing to light these virtuous relationships, is a task that aims to preserve the environment and culture for renewed awareness that can lay the foundations for a sustainable and resilient future.


Mediterranean Diet Coalition

In 2021, representative members from the seven emblematic communities united in a common vision to collaborate in the protection of this cultural heritage and the promotion of its values to the world. This task force collaborates on events, cultural initiatives, and publications to diffuse the Mediterranean values and practices around the world.

The Mediterranean Diet safeguards the knowledge, customs, and values that are transmitted orally within the context of family life as integral parts of the collective cultural identity and memory of Mediterranean societies.

Explore the Mediterranean Diet