MANILA, Philippines (The Adobo Chronicles, Manila Bureau) – The Philippines’ Department of Trade and Industry (DTI) has formed a committee to come up with a “national standard” for adobo (a meat dish marinated in soy sauce and vinegar) and other popular Filipino favorites as “sinigang” (sour stew), “sisig” (chopped pork with onions, chili, usually served on a hotplate) and lechon (roasted pig).
In a statement on Friday, the Bureau of Philippine Standards (BPS), an agency under the DTI, said a technical committee (TC 92) has been established to develop Philippine National Standards (PNS) on native viands.
The process will take into consideration the different ways to cook the dish across the country, the bureau said.
Reacting to the DTI announcement, Filipino chefs and carinderia owners immediately condemned the move as yet another attempt by the government to clamp down on citizen freedoms, in this case, the freedom to cook adobo whichever way they want.
In an exclusive interview with The Adobo Chronicles, a spokesperson for DTI said that the committee will promulgate strict standards on how much soy sauce or vinegar to use when cooking adobo, how many leaves of laurel (dried bay leaves) to use, and what cut of chicken or pork will be allowed. Violators of the established standards will face a lifetime ban on cooking what is considered the Philippines’ national dish — whether they are home cooks or restaurant chefs.
DTI will also ban cookbooks that don’t comply with the established standards for cooking adobo.