The City of Bergen was in 2015 accepted as a member of the UNESCO Creative Cities Network . The process and feasability study prior to the UCCN application processes goes back to 2011, and aimed to uncover the strengths and weaknesses of the existing assets in gastronomy in the Bergen region, envisage improvements and new policies. In 2013 the application process was supported by the local authorities, and the Norwegian UNESCO committee in the Knowledge department.
The application process has been broad and participatory, involving key persons from public, private, academia and civil society. Several new policies and agreements have been established the last year. At a local level, the Food Strategy Program to support the objectives of the UCCN network, the creative sector, markets and the local food value chain was approved by regional authorities in October 2014.
Also, the Bergen city region has recently initiated a broad gastronomic cooperation with the city of Ôstersund,and the two nordic cities has signed a MoU-agreement (Memorandum of Understanding) in order to involve the creative sector of both cities in culinary, promotional and information exchanges, with the aim to further develop the nordic cuisine. Ôstersund will host the annual UCCN meeting in 2016 .
December 11th 2015, UNESCO announced that it would include 10 more members of the gastronomy part of the Creative Cities network, including the Bergen Region.
The application is available here.
18 Cities of Gastronomy
116 cities make up the UNESCO Creative City Network, covering gastronomy, music, film, literature, crafts & folk art, media arts and design. 18 of these Cities are designated “Cities of Gastronomy”. In addition to Bergen, these cities are
- Belém (Brazil)
- Burgos (Spain)
- Chengdu (China)
- Dénia (Spain)
- Ensenada (Mexico)
- Florianopolis (Brazil)
- Gaziantep (Turkey)
- Jeonju (South Korea)
- Parma (Italy)
- Phuket (Thailand)
- Popayàn (Colombia)
- Rasht (Iran [Islamic Republic of])
- Shunde (China)
- Tucson (United States of America)
- Tsuruoka (Japan)
- Zahlé (Lebanon)
- Östersund (Sweden)
Focal Point for UNESCO
There is established both a working group and a steering group for the UNESCO designation. Responsibility for the supervision of Bergen’s UNESCO membership is shared by the Municipality of Bergen, Hordaland County Council, the County Governor,
as well as various other actors representing the region’s «farm-to-table» and fjord traditions. The membership includes the entire region around Bergen and aims to build on tradition and development within local food production, grass root movements and creative gastronomy. In contrast to the traditional prevailing «protected status», this UNESCO network is future-oriented and encourages its cities to be creative on a local level and to look for international opportunities for co-operation.
The UNESCO focal point of Bergen is responsible for coordinating activities directly linked to the UNESCO designation. The UNESCO focal point may be contacted on creative_city_Bergen@bergen.kommune.no.
About the Bergen UNESCO logo
All the 116 byene in the UNESCO network has their own logo comprising the official UNESCO logo and the City specific logo. The logo is used exclusively on the UNESCO webpage and on official UNESCO events in Bergen and the surrounding area. The Bergen logo is designed to reflect both the city an the region, the blue (coast, ocean) and the green (fjords, agriculture), the historical part (Bryggen Wharf at the front).
The UNESCO focal point of Bergen is following closely the work connected to the UNESCO Bergen City of Gastronomy to the UNESCO designation. The UNESCO focal point may be contacted on creative_city_Bergen@bergen.kommune.no.