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Tasty Tidbits: UN Values Culinary Tourism

The United Nations World Tourism Organization has issued a Global Report on Food Tourism. A�It explores the links between tourism and food and highlights the importance of the industry to the tourism sector and economies globally.

?The growth of food tourism worldwide is an obvious fact. It is one of the most dynamic segments within the tourism market.?

The report highlights gastronomy�s importance in the development of tourism destinations in the world, global food tourism trends, their members� views and international case studies.

The report notes that ?Over a third of tourist spending is devoted to food. Therefore, the cuisine of a destination is an aspect of the utmost importance in the quality of the holiday experience.?

If you�re still questioning the power of culinary tourism, a few more stats; ?eating in restaurants is the second favourite activity of foreigners visiting the United States and is the number one leisure activity for US travelers when they visit other countries.?

As input to the report, the UNWTO conducted a survey among their members. ?88.2% of respondents consider that gastronomy is a strategic element in defining the brand and image of their destination.? It is an effective means to differentiate destinations.

The report also identifies characteristics of food tourists noting ?They are travelers seeking the authenticity of the places they visit through food.?

They also:

  • Are concerned about origin of products
  • Food tourism is a means of socializing and exchanging experiences with others
  • They have a higher-than average expenditure
  • They are demanding and appreciative
  • They have a high level of loyalty
  • They revisit destinations due to gastronomy

There is increasing attention and recognition among global destinations that culinary tourism is a powerful economic driver, travel motivator and destination differentiator.

Is local food and drink working to boost your community�s economy and attract high value culinary tourists?

For more information about developing culinary tourism strategies, products and experiences please contact us.