In efforts to promote culinary tourism and upgrade Greece’s travel product, the Greek Tourism Confederation (SETE), the SETE Institute (INSETE) and Marketing Greece are joining forces with the Greek Gastronomy Guide to launch the “Gastronomy Destinations” initiative.
The announcement was made during a SETE workshop held on Wednesday under the theme, “Tourism, gastronomy, local identity: A Greek look into a global trend”.
According to SETE President Yiannis Retsos, local communities will play a major role in the “Gastronomy Destinations” project, which aims to further develop each region’s gastronomy identity and promote new partnerships; enhance the destinations’ added value; improve the demand factors of the local tourism product and increase awareness on the gastronomy features of each destination.
“The strong ties between agri-food and tourism, the synergies and the interconnection that emerge, offer new business opportunities and the potential for the sustainable development of local communities,” Retsos said. “We are working intensively towards creating a social alliance for tourism,” he added.
Other initiatives aiming to promote culinary tourism include a number of specialized policy papers to be published by INSETE in 2018, which will include good practices from all over the world; specific policy proposals on agri-food; handbooks and surveys for tourism and agri-food professionals. The institute will also conduct a survey under the theme, “The branded local product as an effective tool of hospitality and destination marketing”.
Additionally, Marketing Greece, a private marketing company co-founded by SETE, will continue to highlight Greece’s producers, gastronomy and experiences through its campaigns, while its digital platform Blogtrotters this year will focus exclusively on gastronomy.
The SETE workshop also included a panel discussion on best gastronomy practices with the participation of Dimitris Kalaitzidakis, director of operations, Grecotel Hotels & Resorts; Giorgos Pittas, founder of Greek Gastronomy Guide; George Hatziyannakis, owner of the Selene Restaurant on Santorini and Antonis Psalits representing the Tinos Food Paths.
Also present were secretary general of agricultural policy and management of European funds Charalambos Kasimis and secretary general for tourism policy and development Giorgos Tziallas.